Sports awards: Connor aims to achieve his goals with Potters
CONNOR Sargeant could be the answer to Stoke City's goalscoring problems.
There's just one problem, we might have to wait until at least 2020 to find out if he is.
For Connor is only nine, but is already making great waves in local boys' football after scoring 47 goals in a dozen games this season.
His phenomenal strike rate has left Porthill Rangers under-10s blazing a trail at the top of Division Two of the Potteries Mini Soccer League.
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His eye for goal was enough to not only earn him a trip to Stoke City's training ground recently, but also the chance to sign on the dotted line.
He is a big Stoke fan, so turned down Port Vale four times to chase his dream of playing in the Potters' Academy.
Whisper it quietly, but young Connor, who is from Chesterton, has actually scored more goals this season than Stoke's entire first-team put together.
Connor's favourite players are Steven Nzonzi and Peter Crouch, revealing: "I think Crouchy is amazing."
But he models himself on a certain superstar at Real Madrid. "When I'm playing, I try to copy Ronaldo's skills," he revealed.
Connor has been nominated in the Junior Individual category of The Sentionel/City of Stoke-on-Trent Sports Personality of the Year Awards by his mum, Sarah.
She says Connor, a pupil at Churchfields Primary School, has taken all the recent press and TV attention in his stride. She explained: "He was on Sky Sports and has been all over the papers, including The Sentinel, where he was on the front page with Peter Crouch and on page four with Tony Pulis.
"He hasn't let it go to his head, he is so laid back. At school his friends have tried to pick on him, but his attitude back has been, 'I'll teach you so you can end up where I am'. He stops his football and shows them how to do skills.
"I'm so proud of what he has achieved in life at nine-years old."
She says Connor has a rare passion for football and is never far from the game, indoors or outdoors.
"He lives for football," she added. "If he isn't playing it on the pitch then he is on the computer playing football games. He is a lovely lad and will help anyone, young or old."
She hopes Connor's example will show the Potteries that it does have its own footballing talent. And she admits she has nominated him on the quiet.
"Connor has no idea I'm doing this for him. I just thought he deserves something back and for me to show him how proud I am."
She said his managers at Porthill Rangers, Andrew Barley and Graham Hardy, deserve credit for the development of both the team and their star striker.
Connor will carry on playing for the club this season before joining Stoke's Academy in the summer.
And then, fingers crossed, Stokies will soon be toasting a prolific Potter who is one of their very own.