Two Rossett School leavers are set to go stateside after being accepted on to prestigious football scholarships.
Vicky Naylor and Cameron Rushworth are heading to different colleges in the USA in September after completing their A Levels this year.
Vicky, who plays in goal for Harrogate Town Ladies, will be going to Goshen College in Indiana on a full tuition four-year scholarship, while Cameron, who plays across the defensive back line, will be spending two years at Parkland College, Illinois, on an elite athlete scholarship.
PE teacher Ricky O’Sullivan said: “We’re delighted for Vicky and Cam being able to focus on their sport and expand their talents. It’s definitely a pathway for them and they’ll be playing in front of up to 30,000 people, so a much bigger crowd and support than over here. They’ll also get to experience a different culture and way of life.”
Vicky began playing football at the age of five for Knaresborough Celtic, continuing on and off for the club until she was 16. She also played for York CoE at age 10 and 11 before playing for the Leeds United Girls Academy (Leeds RTC) when she was 13. She then progressed to play for the Harrogate Town Development Team and Nidd Under 18s.
Although nervous about leaving her friends and family and meeting new people, Vicky said she’s looking forward to moving to the USA.
She said: “The facilities and level of play in America is of a much higher standard than in the UK, which means I’ll have more opportunities to improve my skills. I’m excited to gain independence by living so far away and I’m excited to try out a bunch of different classes too.”
Cameron, meanwhile, played for Beckwithshaw Saints from the ages of five to 15, before moving to Harrogate Railway for two years, winning the league twice and the cup once. Recently, he has played for Pontefract Under 19s and the Ultimate Footballing Coaching Academy, taking part in a national final at St George’s Park.
He said: “I’m excited to begin a new journey in my life, being able to experience the US. Football is a way I express myself and the scholarship will enable me to play at a high level and learn new skills.”
Vicky and Cameron are following in the footsteps of former Rossett students Rachel Daly, Chloe Bellerby and Dan Nimmick. Houston Dash captain and England international Rachel moved to New York in 2012 to study on a football scholarship, while former Harrogate Town Ladies player and mental health champion Chloe is based in the USA after moving to New Jersey on a college scholarship in 2019. And Dan has just been signed by a Division 2 team in the States after taking up a scholarship there two years ago.
Rossett headteacher Helen Woodcock said: “These scholarships are well deserved for Vicky and Cam, and we all wish them the best of luck and lots of fun representing Rossett in the USA.”