"Myself and all his family are so proud of him" - Halifax schoolboy Jack signs for Manchester United academy

A Halifax schoolboy's dreams have come true after he signed a contract with Manchester United's academy.

By Tom Scargill
Wednesday, 4th May 2022, 3:36 pm
Jack Maguire

Jack Maguire, eight, is a pupil at Barkisland School and lives with mum Michelle, dad Colin and younger sister Nieve, five, in Barkisland village.

Jack has played in the Manchester United pre academy since he was six, and was first scouted at five years old for Manchester City and Sheffield United while playing for Elland, his local grassroots team.

Jack had his heart set on been signed for Manchester United as he and his dad are big fans of the club.

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Jack at Old Trafford with his mum, dad and sister

After a few setbacks due to lockdown and a broken collarbone, Jack has worked hard to secure his place in the elite academy programme.

"In January we were told by the club they wanted to offer Jack a contract as he had made a great come back and had all the attributes they were looking for - athleticism, the will to win, tenacity and ball mastery skills," said Michelle.

Jack will play for the club's under nine's team, training twice a week at the club's current training ground, Carrington, as well as The Cliff, the club's former training ground. competing in games against other Premier League clubs on weekends.

The family went to Old Trafford to sign the contract and after they were given a tour of the ground, the team were presented with named shirts numbered 22 for the year the boys signed at the club.

Jack at Old Trafford with his mum, dad and sister

Michelle said: "Obviously myself and all his family are so proud of him, his hard work, determination and commitment has paid off, he's done amazing.

"He is over the moon to be playing for the club he loves, there have been many great experiences, he gets to travel, and play at some amazing stadiums.

"He has played at St George's Park, England's training ground, Old Trafford and will soon be playing at Leicester's and Wolverhampton's ground.

"He will also get the opportunity to travel overseas to compete which will be amazing for him.

"He gets to watch and cheer on many of the first team, under 23's and under 18's games, meeting and learning from other Manchester United players who have progressed through the academy programme.

"He's obsessed with football, he permanently has a ball attached to his feet.

"It can be slightly annoying because it doesn't matter if it's in the house or outside!

"18 players have been signed, three of which are goalkeepers, so it is a great achievement to have been selected."