Below is a transcript of our interview with Ethan Gaddu, who was scouted by and has had a trial with West Ham. You can listen to the full interview and watch Ethan's highlights HERE
So Ethan, tell us what happened after the 5 Day Camp?
“The UK Football Trials Camp went really well, I got some interest from a couple of clubs but West Ham was the main one and I went down to their academy. It was very good, very exciting. UK Football Trials really helped me out so when I got to West Ham I was prepared for it, they taught me how to prepare for an actual trial and the real deal. It went very well at West Ham, they were very professional coaches and the training was an amazing experience for me.”
How long were you at West Ham on trial for?
“About a week, week and a half or so. I was learning every day getting used to the play and paying attention to the players and coaches to get better."
What type of things were you doing at West Ham?
“Some normal stuff like stretching, cool down stuff and also some variation plays, like 3 on 2, 2 on 2, 2 on 1, learning how to put those into real game situations and make the most of it."
What age group were you training with at the academy?
“I was with the u16’s and the standard was very good. I was quite surprised, they were very skilful players, strong players and technical players as well who had high football intelligence.”
West Ham are a big Premier League club with a new stadium and training ground, what did you make of the facilities?
“The facilities were amazing, indoor and outdoor pitches, a gym, the facilities and pitches were amazing, they have everything you could need there.”
Have you any trials before?
“I’ve had trials here and there around Europe, for AC Milan in Italy and one in Croatia but this is the main one where I’ve been in there for a long period of time.”
AC Milan, wow! Talk us through that experience…
“My cousin sent my video to a few clubs that he knew and AC Milan called me down for a trial at the youth academy to see how I did. It was really good, I got to see new playing styles and meet new players. It was completely different and a really good experience all round.”
What did you make of our 5 Day Training and Trials Camp?
“It was fantastic. The training was amazing, I learnt about psychology which is a really big part of football that I’d never really thought about before. Also the nutrition part of it; altogether it was a really amazing experience that has really opened my eyes up to the world of football and how there’s so much more to it. I’ll never forget it. It really developed me, you eat the right food, you can see yourself getting better and better over the five days. It feels like a real professional environment and sets you up for a future in football.”
How would you describe yourself as a player?
“Very hardworking, I’ll do anything for the team and I really put in the work. I go out and train as much as I can. I always want to improve and get better.”
What’s a normal weeks training for you?
“Wake up, train early morning then head to school and then after school I’ll do around another three hours training, it depends what school work is like. I make sure I get good sessions in pretty much every day during the week, maybe I have one rest day. Also at school I do a conditioning programme so I’ve got weight training and running during school.
Obviously you’ve done well and been scouted, so what would your advice be to other players?
“It’s all about putting in the work. As many times as I’ve felt failure in the sport and it’s put me down, something has made me stronger as a person in my personality and in my character. You have to push by that disappointment, if someone says no, it doesn’t mean everyone will. If you’re willing to put in the work, someone will notice you and you’ll get recognition for that.”