Search

Laura targets a sweet birthday treat

PUBLISHED: 15:42 12 September 2008 | UPDATED: 21:16 05 July 2010

A RISING football star will be celebrating a belated 16th birthday present when she pulls on an England shirt and makes her international debut.

Lowestoft's Laura Thacker, who plays for Norwich City Ladies, has been called up into the England U17 squad to play Greece, Estonia and Norway at an international tournament next week.

A RISING football star will be celebrating a belated 16th birthday present when she pulls on an England shirt and makes her international debut.

Lowestoft's Laura Thacker, who plays for Norwich City Ladies, has been called up into the England U17 squad to play Greece, Estonia and Norway at an international tournament next week.

The talented teenager will be based in Tallinn, Estonia from September 15-25 as the national team play in the UEFA European Women's U17 Championships.

And realising the stuff dreams are made of, the Benjamin Britten High School pupil - who turns 16 tomorrow - told The Journal: “I am really nervous, but am also really looking forward to it. “I want to carry on playing football, hopefully with England and at the highest level I can.”

Keen to progress into ladies football, Laura has just eight months left of High School now, and approaching her GCSE exams, she will have to take school work out with her to Estonia.

After getting her first taste of football while playing for a boys team in Dubai, it wasn't until the teenager moved to Lowestoft in 2002 that she joined a local side.

It has been consistent displays on the pitch that have taken her from club football with Kirkley and Pakefield FC and Swanton Herons, into the Norwich City player development centre, and most recently into the Canaries school of excellence side at U15 level - which contains a squad of 18.

For the past four seasons, Laura has shone with her strong defensive displays at Norwich. She has played over 100 matches for the Canaries at youth level, and now trains with the Ladies team.

In that time, Laura has played against the likes of Arsenal, Aston Villa, and Fiorentina in both club games and overseas tours. With two sessions a week training, and playing between 30 and 40 games a year, it has been a number of fine displays in these games that have led to a national call-up.

Having successfully progressed through trials at Reading last month, Laura was hand-picked by the U17 coaches after her towering performance at centre half.

Revealing she was “quick” across the ground, “very good” in the air and fierce in the tackle, the youngster is now on the verge of realising a dream as she prepares for a ten-day trip with the England team.

“I just screamed when I found out I'd been called up,” she admitted. “I didn't even trial for the U17 team so I couldn't really believe it when I found out.”

Her parents Keith and Helen were equally delighted when they received the news that Laura had been selected to represent her country. “Proud is an understatement,” Mr Thacker said.

After being picked in a squad of 18 players, Laura will be aiming to make her debut next Friday against Greece, before playing Estonia on September 21 and Norway on September 24.

The England squad is: Ashleigh Goddard Arsenal LFC, Naomi Cole Arsenal LFC, Juliana Draycott Leeds United LFC,

Katharine Nutman Colchester United LFC, Kasia Lipka Sheffield United LFC, Kirsty Linnett Leicester City LFC, Francesca Kirby Reading LFC, Alex Greenwood Everton LFC, Danielle Carter Leyton Orient LFC, Francesca Ali Millwall Lionesses LFC, Bethanie Gardner Newcastle United WFC, Lauren Bruton Arsenal LFC, Laura Bird Ipswich Town LFC, Phoebe Richards Wolverhampton Wanderers LFC, Paige Eli West Riding, Deanna Cooper Gillingham LFC, Laura Thacker Norwich City LFC, Lara Fay Arsenal LFC.

In recent years, Laura has been sponsored by four local companies in her quest to make it to the top - BFS Fabrications, Nick Birch at PSL Energy, S&G Fabrication and David Cox at APEX Scaffolding. The Thacker's thanked these companies for their support, and if anyone is interested in helping out this England starlet then e-mail the sports editor at The Journal mark.boggis@archant.co.uk and we will pass on your details to the family.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Lowestoft Journal

Hot Jobs

Show Job Lists