Gateshead FC Signs College Student

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Ryan Bolton

Gateshead College student Ryan Bolton has signed a one year professional contract with Gateshead FC.

The defender joins the first-team setup having spent last season with the under-19 squad under the guidance of Ben Clark and Matty Pattison.

The 19-year-old appeared for the first team during the club’s 2020/21 pre-season schedule, and was included in the 18-man squad to face Farsley Celtic in last season’s Buildbase FA Trophy.

Bolton also appeared for Northern League Division Two side West Allotment Celtic prior to the cancellation of the 2020/21 season.

“Ryan has demonstrated a brilliant attitude,” said player-manager Mike Williamson.

“He has shown a willingness to improve, a great work ethic and he’s deserved a chance to progress.”

Ryan has signed the professional contract after completing a two-year BTEC in sports science at Gateshead College’s Academy for Sport, followed by a one-year scholarship with the Gateshead FC Academy.

The academy is a partnership between Gateshead College and Gateshead FC where students play or coach at the football club while studying for nationally recognised qualifications.

Mark Spencer, Head of Men’s Football at Gateshead College said: “I’m thrilled that Ryan has signed a professional contract with Gateshead FC. It’s what our academy is all about; coaching and training home-grown players who can then progress into the under 19’s and eventually into the first team.”

Over the last few years, the college-football club partnership has produced some notable success stories. Former Heed players Jon Mellish and Tom White have gone on to play for Carlisle and Blackburn respectively, while Elliot Forbes is now a regular in Gateshead’s first team having impressed for the reserves.

Sat May 21 2022