Former college footballer scores top signing

Charlie WassmerFormer East Berkshire College student Charlie Wassmer has netted the biggest goal of his footballing career so far. The talented young player, who recently completed a Coaching NVQ Level three course at the Langley Campus, has been signed by Crawley Town FC.

With a string of impressive performances in his first full season at senior level, the 20 year old defender was spotted by the club while playing for Hayes and Yeading United. A team he started playing for when he was only nine years old.

Passionate about the sport from a young age, Charlie developed his skills on and off the pitch through East Berkshire College’s award-winning football programme, which saw him combine playing for semi-professional Hayes and Yeading United with study at the College.

“I’ve always dreamt of playing at the highest level and things are really starting to happen for me now,” says Charlie. “Through my college course, I was able to work with and learn from a variety of top coaches. It made me physically and mentally stronger as well as helping me with the positioning and reading of the game. I wouldn’t be where I am now if it wasn’t for the teaching staff at the College. I’m very grateful to them and Hayes & Yeading United. I owe them so much.”   

Charlie felt his dream of becoming a professional footballer might slip away in 2008, however, when he was diagnosed with diabetes just before his 18th birthday. Instead, he turned it around to his advantage and now hopes his success will inspire others to do the same.

“It was a shock at first, but I realised I just had to get on with it. In a way, my diabetes has helped me because it made me more determined to succeed and forced me to eat healthy, which has improved my fitness levels. I want to show others that conditions like diabetes shouldn’t stop you following your dreams.”

“I have only been at Crawley for about six weeks and I have played 10 matches already. The club has made me feel really welcome and I’m getting to play alongside a lot of experienced players. I am learning so much. I was sad to leave Hayes & Yeading, but I think this was the right move for me and I hope one day to play in the premiership.”

Crawley boss Steve Evans, said: “Charlie is a young man who came to our attention earlier this season and we have watched his progress ever since. He has had a number of Npower Football League Clubs watch him as his performances have been outstanding. He is a young player that I think can progress quickly.”

Simon East, Manager of the College’s Sports Academy, believes Charlie has a promising career ahead of him:

“Being signed by Crawley is a great achievement. The standard at the club is very high and I think Charlie will be a valuable addition to the team. He is a great role model for our current students and I have high hopes for him.” 

East Berkshire College has a strong reputation for nurturing budding young footballers with a number of former students, such as wx6obh Scott, having made the step up into the professional game.

Forming part of the College’s Sports Academy, the football development programme has won a Football Association National Charter Standard award, the most prestigious award in grassroots football. The programme offers individuals the chance to study a full-time course whilst training to an elite level alongside professional coaches.

For further information on East Berkshire College and its extensive range of over 700 courses, visit or call 0845 373 2500.

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