22 June 2024

Starring role nets Academy Award for North Wales footballer with Hollywood dreams

HARRY ASHFIELD netted an Academy Award following a starring role at Wrexham AFC this season.

The Coleg Cambria student and Under 18s midfielder – who made his full team debut in the autumn – picked up the 2023/24 Bob Clark Academy Player of the Season trophy following a number of impressive displays and having captained the side several times.

The squad were narrowly beaten to the EFL Youth Alliance North-West league title by rivals Preston, but looking back on an “incredible year”, Harry was delighted with the progress he has made.

“To play for the first team and to have contributed to the success of the under 18s – even though we just missed out on the title – was a huge positive for me,” said the 17 year-old, who hails from the city and has been with the Red Dragons since he was just six years old.

“I have had a taste of playing in front of our amazing fans at the STōK Cae Ras so my ambition now is to keep working and training hard so I can experience that again and again.

“To win the Academy Player of the Season Award is also a huge honour so thanks to everyone who has given me so much support this season, notably my family, friends and everyone at the club.”

Harry’s first appearance for Phil Parkinson’s squad came in the 0-3 EFL Trophy victory over Crewe Alexandra at the Mornflake Stadium last October.

A Level 3 Sports learner at Cambria’s Yale site and former Darland High School pupil, he has his sights set on breaking into the team on a regular basis after this taste of the big time, given the club’s now global standing under the stewardship of Hollywood owners Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney.

“I’ve been training with the first team for the last couple of years, which has obviously been a whirlwind given everything that’s happened on and off the pitch – it’s been amazing,” he added.

“I finish college this summer and from here I will be completely focused on football as a career.”

Sally Jones, Curriculum Director for Sport, Public Services and Business at Yale, congratulated Harry on his award victory.

“Harry has made huge strides this season, breaking into the first team and now winning the Academy player of the year award – we wish him the very best for the future.”

For the latest news and information from Coleg Cambria, visit www.cambria.ac.uk.