'It's a dream come true' says AFC Sudbury's Tyler French as he joins Bradford City
PUBLISHED: 06:00 29 May 2019 | UPDATED: 06:29 29 May 2019
AFC Sudbury defender Tyler French admits, 'it's a dream come true', after he signed for League Two Bradford City.
The 20-year-old who has attracted interest from a number of professional clubs in recent years, put pen to paper on a two-year deal with Gary Bowyer's side, who were relegated from League One last season.
For French it's a big jump from Mark Morsley's AFC Sudbury Bostik North side, but one he is confident he can make.
He was under contract at Sudbury, who revealed they have received 'a five-figure sum' for him.
"I can't really put it into words how I feel," the Bury St Edmunds-born player said.
"It's a dream come true.
"I feel I've worked so hard to get to this point. I've been for trials at other professional clubs and come close to getting a contract.
"The more trials I have had the more clubs who have become interested.
"I'd always hoped of being a professional footballer. It's all I've really wanted to be, but I never really knew if it would happen.
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"But it has and I can't wait to get going."
French follows in a line of non-league players moving into the professional game which is getting longer by the season.
It took just one trial match and one training session at Bradford for Bowyer to offer French a deal.
Ipswich Town, Charlton, Barnsley, Yeovil, Peterborough, Crawley and Premier League Crystal Palace are among the clubs who have had French on trial, but it was the Bantams who have give the former Ormiston Sudbury Academy student his opportunity.
"This is the start for me," French continued.
"I want to play as high as I can, go as high as I can. I'm not a cocky person but you have to have belief in yourself, which I have."
He starts pre-season training with the Bantams later next month.
French was 17 when he made his first-team AFC Sudbury debut at right back, and he was made captain of the team in one of Sudbury boss Morsley's first games in charge.
Morsley said: "Pace, strength, aerially strong, technical ability and good distribution are his strengths.
"I believe this transfer is an indication of how outstanding our academy is. This is a fantastic opportunity for Tyler."
While AFC Sudbury Academy director Danny Laws added: "Tyler has all the attributes to make it at the highest level and his development is one I am personally proud off."