Mansfield Town academy graduates Lewis Gibbens and Alistar Smith went back to school yesterday, taking part in a question and answer session and shooting session at Football in the Community’s afterschool club at King Edwards Primary School.
Pupils also got the chance to ask the duo for advice on technique during the sessions before receiving a signed program for the teenage Stags stars.
Students from years four, five and six have been attending the after school club over the last eleven weeks, developing their footballing skills, techniques, and confidence as part of Premier League Primary Stars.
After breaking through the Stags Academy, both Smith and Gibbens have made their senior bow this season and were on hand to share their advice on how pupils could follow in their footsteps, during the Q&A session.
Midfielder Alistar Smith said “It’s good for the kids to see other players [who they aspire to] and it’s something that when I was growing up I wish was available for me at my School. I hope they can look at me and Gibbo [Lewis Gibbens] and say ‘if they can do it, we can do it’ sort of thing as we’re still quite young.
“There’s a good couple of players out there to be fair, a lot of gems who are good at striking the ball, so sessions such are great – if we can inspire them to be a footballer that’s great for the town and for them,”
Defender Lewis Gibbens added “It was quite a good experience really, all the kids look like they enjoy there football which is very good when they’re young because like I said to them, it gets difficult when you get older and you have the ups and downs, so enjoy it why you can.
“Sessions like this are a great experience for some of the kids to work with the coaches and meet some of us players because I know when I was at School [in Leicester] my local school never did anything like this – so to look up to coaches and players and get to meet them – could be a kids dream”