Young Matlock Town goalkeeper set for Sheffield United trial

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Promising Matlock Town academy goalkeeper Alfie Smith-Eccles is preparing for trials at Championship-bound Sheffield United.

Alfie Smith-Eccles, 16, will be put through his paces at Bramall Lane on a yet to be confirmed date as he bids to breakthrough into the big time.

He said: “I’m hoping to be able to make a living out of football. I’ve been offered trials at Sheffield United and I really want to make that step up.

“Football is my passion and and to make it in the professional game would be a dream come true.”

Smith-Eccles has played a number of top teams during his youth career, including Nottingham Forest, Derby County, Chesterfield and Sheffield Wednesday.

However, the youngster was unable to breakthrough at these clubs and saw Matlock Town as the best fit for him.

But Smith-Eccles is keeping his feet firmly on the ground and has already got another pathway prepared for if he does not make it into Sheffield United by falling back on his education.

He said: “I’ve got my education which is part of the programme to fall back on and go to University to do either Physiotherapy or Sports Management. We should be looking more at this pathway next year.”

Matlock Town’s academy Head Coach Jamie Yates added that other players in his side are also more than capable of making it into the Football League.