League Football Education (LFE) has recognised the on and off pitch achievements of 11 young footballers.
‘The 11’ acknowledges the football and academic progress of Under-18 players on apprenticeships at current or former English Football League (EFL) clubs – and is also designed to assess other factors, including involvement in community or charity-based initiatives.
A total of 33 apprentices from a selection of 1,100 are recognised for the award during the 2021-22 season, which celebrates the holistic development of young players and is a barometer applied to the LFE Apprentice of the Year awards.
Notable academy graduates to earn the accolade includes Jude Bellingham (formerly of Birmingham City), Dominic Calvert-Lewin (formerly of Sheffield United), Ademola Lookman (formerly of Charlton Athletic), Oli McBurnie (formerly of Bradford City) and Ryan Sessegnon (formerly of Fulham).
LFE chief executive Sarah Stephen added: “The 11 is directly associated with apprentice reviews that are conducted by our Regional Officers throughout the season. It is a great way to highlight the achievements and progression of talented young footballers, who apply themselves to all aspects of their apprenticeship.”
For profiles on all of the players named in ‘The 11’ for November 2021, an in-depth article is available on the LFE website.
‘The 11’ for November is as follows:
- Harry Leeson (Bristol City
- Ryan Howley (Coventry City)
- Jevon Mills (Hull City)
- Jephte Tanga (Leyton Orient)
- Brooklyn Illunga (MK Dons)
- James Clarridge (Nottingham Forest)
- Dan Gifford (Portsmouth)
- Henry Hawkins (Queens Park Rangers)
- Louie Arrowsmith (Southend United)
- Alex Aitken (Stevenage)
- Tommy Simkin (Stoke City)
Speaking upon Ryan's inclusion, Head of Education Jay Groocock had this to say:
"Ryan is unable to attend most Friday/Monday lectures due to heavy involvement within the first team schedule.
"However, the work that is missed is always caught up by Ryan as he is very aware of the work ethic needed to maintain his wanted D*D*D* profile.
"Ryan takes a very active role in asking for recorded lectures and missed assignment work. He also attends Wednesday’s education and is a model student within the classroom.
"Ryan has had an incredible last few months. He attended the first team pre-season training camp in Spain which resulted in him playing against other professional teams, including Sevilla.
"Ryan also played against Premier league outfit Wolves in a pre-season friendly for the first team. His performances have resulted in him training mostly with the first team squad and he got his debut a couple weeks ago in a cup game vs Northampton town at the CBS stadium.
"Ryan appears to be managing load and education work very well. He is a humble, intelligent young man who is continuing to work very hard and deserves all the plaudits he receives."