Star goalkeeper to chase his sports broadcasting dream after graduating from Velocity programme

Ethan Gough – Velocity Football Student of the Year – has been accepted to study a Sports Journalism degree at Staffordshire University.

But before moving to Stoke-on-Trent, the 17-year-old will remain at Oxford City Football Club for a year to complete a sports journalism apprenticeship with Velocity Football’s sister company Ignite Sport UK.

The talented goalkeeper passed Velocity Football’s two-year Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Sport programme, delivered in partnership with Virtual Learning UK, with flying colours.

After representing Oxford City FC in its outstanding 2020-21 FA Cup campaign, Ethan now has ambitions to swap his gloves for the microphone and spark a career in sports broadcasting.

“I love playing football and being in goal, but commentary and punditry is my real passion,” said Ethan. “My two-year course with Velocity Football has allowed me to further progress my playing ability while unlocking a pathway to further studies in the media sector.

“I needed DMM (distinction, merit, merit) from my internal and synoptic assessments to be accepted into university, but I achieved DDD which was amazing.

“With the support of Velocity Football’s staff and tutors, I have been able to get the grades required to further my education. I’m really looking forward to my apprenticeship and then going to university.”

Ethan witnessed first-hand the transformation of Oxford City’s educational programme when it was rebranded as Velocity Football last summer. Students aspiring towards a career in sport can now study towards a BTEC, Higher National Certificate or Higher National Diploma qualification.

The course combines training, competitive matches and education and is delivered under one roof by a team of experienced and qualified coaches and tutors. 

“The last year at Velocity Football has been very good,” said Ethan. “The education has improved massively and because everything takes place on the same site, it’s seamless too.

“I would be training in the morning and go straight into lessons afterwards, there was no travelling to and from different locations and everyone was working together which made for a great learning atmosphere.

“It’s been frustrating at times when we couldn’t play games or train together due to COVID-19, but everyone adapted well to deliver sessions remotely. I’m very pleased I enrolled and would encourage anyone interested in a career in sport to do the same.”

Justin Merritt, Director of Velocity Football, said: “Ethan has worked exceptionally hard during his time at Velocity and his distinction grades are fully deserved.

“Although Ethan has showed exceptional talent in goal, he has developed a passion for sports broadcasting and we are pleased to support him in broadening his knowledge and experience of the sector via an apprenticeship with Ignite Sport UK.

“His development pathway is a fantastic example of what we aim to provide every student who enrols with Velocity Football. We’re looking forward to making Ethan part of our team in September and wish him an enjoyable summer break.”

Students studying the programme in 2021-22 will report for pre-season training on Wednesday, August 4, before the new term begins on Monday, September 6.

An induction day will be hosted on Thursday, September 2, for all students. Spaces on next year’s programme are filling quickly but remain open to male and females aged 16 to 23.

For further information and to enquire about enrolling, please contact our friendly team via courses@ignitesportuk.com or call 0300 303 0809.

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