Leah aims to be safe pair of hands for England's women footballers
A 13-year-old girl from West Wittering has been selected to attend the England women's under-15 football training camp '¨at Warwick University.
Leah Samain, who attends Manhood Community College in Selsey, has been playing football since she was seven.
She originally played for West Wittering Youth Football Club, where she was spotted by Tammy Waine, coach from the Brighton & Hove Albion girls’ centre of excellence.
Leah now plays in the under-14 girls’ team at Brighton and recently attended the FA Centre of Excellence in London and a south-east regional talent camp in London, along with five other girls from Brighton CoE.
The camp looks for talented girls who demonstrate outstanding ability to go forward to play for the under-15s’ England squad.
Girls are sent from each of the 50 FA accredited centres of excellence across the UK, so competition was fierce.
Leah started out as an outfield player, but demonstrated natural goalkeeping skills and so moved to play in goal and has since received coaching at Brighton by the Brighton CoE goalie coach Julian Kilner.
Over the years, Leah has broken fingers, a wrist and an elbow, but believes it has all been worth it to reach this level of girls’ football and get the opportunity to progress further.
Leah described the opportunity to join the England training camp as ‘a dream come true’.
Brighton’s Michelle Lawrence said: “We (BHAFC Girls’ CoE) are all delighted at Leah’s inclusion in the England women’s under-15 training camp, and her selection is fully deserved after an impressive showing at the regional camp.
“To go from there to a full national squad training camp shows just how impressive she was on the day.
“It’s important that she enjoys the experience and I’m sure she will take full advantage of this opportunity.”
For further information about the Brighton centre of excellence, contact Michelle Lawrence on 01273 695400.