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Waiting for his big break

Shaun Gordon is like many young players. The 17-year-old striker has international experience with Trinidad and Tobago's under 23s and has played at Wigan and Barnet. Like many schoolboys, he grew up idolising players like Brazilian striker Ronaldo (pictured).

He is currently a non-contract player with Braintree Town's reserves in the Blue Square Bet Premier, but has his mind set on a career as a professional player.

At what age did you first start playing football and who got you into it?

I first started playing football in primary school, so I would say as a seven or eight-year-old. I can't really remember how I got into it. My friends and I used to watch football on the television and pretend we were the pros. I would always pretend I was the Brazilian Ronaldo. I remember trying to reenact everything I saw him do.

How did the opportunity to play for Trinidad and Tobago come about and how did it feel to represent them at U23 level?

I got the chance to represent Trinidad and Tobago through proving my hunger for the game. One day I went on the Soca Warriors website, searched for the relevant contact details and sent my CV and covering letter, along with some in-game footage of myself. They got back to me saying that they were impressed and invited me over to a training camp they were holding before a tournament in June.

How did you find the training experience over in Trinidad?

The style of football over there is really different. The hot climate made adapting hard at first but after a little while, I really enjoyed my experiences with the national team. I look back and I'm proud and extremely grateful for the opportunity that I was given. 

How are you currently finding life at Braintree Town?

Life is all good at Braintree at the moment. Right now, I'm with the reserves just trying to prove myself and score as many goals as possible. I would also just like to thank them for giving me this current opportunity.

What are your strengths on the pitch and attributes as a player?

I believe my pace is a big part of my game. I'm pretty quick, as I used to compete in all the sprinting events in athletics for my county and borough. Also, I have good tactical awareness which is very important. Being called a poacher isn't just about luckily being in the right place at the right time.

Where do you see yourself five years from now?

I believe anything is possible. I would like to see myself playing pro football at a very high level and with hard work, this is not impossible.

What football team do you support and besides football, what other hobbies do you have?

Although I'm a Londoner, I'm a Manchester United fan and have been from birth. Their style of play does it for me all day long. As for hobbies outside of football, I love driving. I passed my test as soon as I turned 17. I haven't got a car at the moment so I can't do much right now but I really enjoy the feeling of driving. I also just like to chill with friends, play XBox, the usual stuff for a teenager.

If you weren't a footballer, what would you be doing?

Well I'm just 17 so there's not much you can really do at this age. If I wasn't into football as much as I am right now, I would most probably have a job in retail or something.

Interview by Eugene Allen



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