Ex-Hall Mead pupil Max Watters can’t wait to make his England Schoolboys debut

PUBLISHED: 16:00 20 January 2017

Max Watters in action for Essex County under-18s earlier in the season (pic: Essex FA).

Max Watters in action for Essex County under-18s earlier in the season (pic: Essex FA).


Shenfield High School student, who plays for Barking in the Essex Senior League, will play for his country on January 28

Ex-Hall Mead pupil Max Watters admits he can’t wait to pull on an England shirt for the first time after a whirlwind few months.

The 17-year-old found out last Thursday (January 12) he had been selected for England under-18 Schoolboys squad.

It means the Shenfield High School student is now preparing to represent the Three Lions in the Centenary Shield later this year, but how did this all come about in the first place?

Watters said: “I play for the Essex County under-18s and it was the manager Graham Hall who recommended me trial for England Schools.

“The first trial I represented North East London and for the second one I was with North London and we played against South London.

“The final one was at Lilleshall and we had to play against the RAF and Royal Navy and luckily I did well.”

Although Watters impressed at Lilleshall, the teenager, currently on-loan at Essex Senior League side Barking, was nervous after his second trial.

The Thurrock midfielder was relieved a strong showing when representing North East London enabled him to reach the final phase.

“I did really well at the first trial, but I didn’t think I’d make it through after the second one,” said Watters.

“The selector actually said because he had seen me play so well in the first trial, he wanted to put me through to the final section anyway.

“After getting through it was great to go to Lilleshall where so many good players started their careers and England squads have trained.”

Watters made his mark during the final trial, although was nervous when the letter from the ESFA came through the post.

But the Upminster youngster didn’t need to worry and is now looking ahead to playing for his country next weekend.

“I found out I had been selected by getting a letter through the post last Thursday,” explained Watters.

“I was nervous before opening it because I didn’t know what to expect, but it was a great feeling. My family were over the moon for me.

“We have a friendly on January 28th against Australia at Lilleshall and then we have a training camp at the end of February to prepare for the Centenary Shield.

“I’m buzzing about it all now and just can’t wait to play and pull on an England shirt for the first time.”

Watters will firstly be concentrating on representing Barking this weekend when Enfield visit Mayesbrook Park for a league match.

The Shenfield High footballer can then turn his focus to England and will be linking up with his team-mates on Friday week ahead of facing Australia the next day.

But Watters won’t be able to take too many of his family members to watch his Three Lions bow because it is only a friendly match.

He added: “I’m going there for one night. We’re training next Friday and then we play on the Saturday.

“Because it’s at Lilleshall we can’t have too many people watching, but I will have some of my family there.”

Watters didn’t even play for a football club before this season – choosing to focus on his studies instead and represent Shenfield High and Essex County whenever selected.

But now he is preparing to play for England and will likely be playing in front of the Sky Sports cameras in March during the Centenary Shield.

“Graham is the person who recommended me go to the trials, so I’m really thankful to him,” said Watters, who certainly appears one to watch!

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