Published: January 21, 2011
Young Burnham football player heads to England squad trials

Burnham-On-Sea youngster Caitlin Berry has reached the final stages of England Squad trials that the Football Association is holding in London this weekend.

This trial is being held for The FA to select the next batch of England U15 and U17 youth players for international training and competition.

The local Burnham girl has reached the final stages by being involved with the Somerset FA Girl’s Centre of Excellence, which runs as one of 50 talent identification centres set up to support female players with the potential to be developed as international players.

Caitlin was put forward by her head coach and centre director at the Centre of Excellence to attend the first phase of regional trials last October in Plymouth

As a result of attending the regional trial, Caitlin and six other players from the Somerset FA Girl's Centre of Excellence were selected for the final stage of trials that are being held this month.

The trials involve coaching, testing and playing activities to assess the players in a variety of areas and compare them with current international players.

Sarah Lawler, County Development Manager for Somerset FA, told "The Somerset FA Girls Centre of Excellence is delighted to have developed such a successful amount of players to attend the final stage of the youth England trials. This programme has been well supported by grass roots clubs who have been integral to this process by supporting young female players to play in local clubs from a young age and when noticing their talent and ability the club managers have nominated these players to Somerset FA for trials."

"We have a total of 64 players involved from eight years old to sixteen, many of whom have shown the potential to play international football and at Premier League standard. Everyone at Somerset FA wishes Caitlin the best at this weekend’s trial and our aim for her and all of the players we work with is to help them reach their potential through this National talent Identification programme that the FA fund."

Caitlin joined Burnbridge Wanderers as an Under 8, being the only girl in the team, and she soon gained the respect of the boys and surprised the opposition with her commitment, pace and crunching tackles to become an integral part of the team that gained promotion in 2006/2007 to Division 1 in the North Somerset Mini League.

Caitlin continued playing for the team until Under 12s when the FA rules stopped her playing in a mixed team. She was then asked to trial for Somerset FA Girls Centre of Excellence and has played for the Under 12s and Under 14s.


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