Will Butterwick, a pupil in Year 11 at Stonyhurst College, has been awarded a two-year scholarship at the Blackburn Rovers Football Academy.
Will has trained at the Academy since the age of seven, and is one of six promising young players to get through from a squad of 16.
Statistically, this is a tremendous achievement: one in 10,000 talented young footballers nationwide proceed to this level.
Will’s scholarship will take effect from July this year.
Blackburn Rovers is the only club in the country to have an academy on site; the players are accommodated at Brockall Village and take part in a seven-day-a-week regime of training.
At present, Will trains at the Academy with professional coaches and former players two full days a week and two evenings after school, as well as playing in matches on Saturdays.
Will is vice captain of his team at Blackburn, which is enjoying a successful season, having been defeated only twice so far!
He plays centre back and centre midfield.
“I think I’m very privileged to be in this position and look forward to the challenge ahead” said Will, who plays football for Stonyhurst and for Lancashire, and enjoys golf too when time allows.
Stonyhurst’s Headmaster Mr Johnson said: “The great thing about Will is his determination.
“He has pursued his ambition to become a professional footballer with huge tenacity, working extremely hard on the pitch and, notably, also in his school work.
“We are very proud of his achievements.”