A TALENTED player from Redbridge College’s football team has been offered a scholarship at an American university.

Godfrey Poku, 18, was approached by a scout after playing at America’s annual festival of international football in Phoenix, Arizona, earlier this month.

Godfrey and teammate Dominic Murchison, 17, were hand-picked to join a squad of players from Preston College to play at the 30th Annual President’s Day Invitational Tournament.

The details of the scholarship agreement are currently being discussed, but it is expected to cover full tuition fees at Fort Louis College, in Colorado. Godfrey will be able to choose which course to study, and will also be a key player in the football team.

Godfrey, currently in his final year on Redbridge College’s Progression Diploma in Football, said: "I have never been to America before, and was really happy and excited to be given the chance to play there.

"When I found out I had been selected for a scholarship I was so pleased. My dad was on holiday at the time, but he called me just after I landed back in the UK, and asked me if it’s what I want to do.

"When I told him it was, he was really happy for me; it’s the kind of opportunity he would have loved to have – he likes football, too. Now I just need to study hard to make sure I pass the academic test."

Martin Mainey, assistant principal for quality improvement at Redbridge College, added: "The fees at American universities are significantly more expensive than those in England, so there is immense competition for scholarships in America.

"Only a small percentage of these are available to overseas students, so Godfrey has been very fortunate. This will be a life-changing experience for him, giving him the opportunity to continue his education while still playing football.

"The college games attract large crowds of spectators, and are taken very seriously by the fans. Players are then picked out at this stage to feed into the national leagues, so this is an unbeatable opportunity for Godfrey to achieve his ambitions."

Dominic Murchison was too young to qualify for a scholarship this year, but has been invited to re-join the Preston College team for next year’s tournament, where he hopes to follow in Godfrey’s footsteps.

For more information about Sports Studies courses at Redbridge College, call 8548 7431. FA accredited courses include Sports Coaching and Leadership as well as BTECs, Diplomas and NVQs in Football.