TALENTED young footballer Callum Patton’s dream has come true after he was picked to play football for his country.
The Wearside teenager has been selected to play for England College’s under-18s when the team takes on Australia at the end of this month.
Callum, 18, from Barnes, who got the call-up just a few weeks ago, said: “When I first heard the news, I couldn’t quite believe it. I was completely speechless.
“To be following in the footsteps of so many of my idols is a dream come true.”
The young striker made it through three stages of trials, seeing off competition from hundreds of other young hopefuls, before being selected.
A big Black Cats fan, Callum is studying for a Btec National Diploma in Sport (Development, Coaching and Fitness) at Sunderland College’s Football Development Centre.
Michele Di Mascio, Sunderland College lecturer and Football Development Centre co-ordinator, said: “This is great news for Callum and for everyone here at the centre.
“We train students to improve their footballing ability and academic knowledge of sport. Callum is one of our hardest-working students so he thoroughly deserves it.”
Callum has already netted 15 goals for Northern League side Chester-le-Street Town FC, and is hoping to one day do the same for England.
The teenage footballer said: “I’ve had some fantastic support from my mum and dad, friends and everyone at the college. All of them are really pleased for me, especially my granddad. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him so happy.”
The match against Australia will be taking place in Solihull, Birmingham and Callum has big hopes for the game.
He said: “There will be quite a few scouts watching the game from many of the top clubs in the country.
“My ultimate dream is to be spotted and offered a professional contract. My favourite footballer is Steven Gerrard and just like him I hope one day to be scoring for England.”
Callum will also be part of the 22-man England College squad when the team tours Eastern Europe in May.