Up Close & Personal with Nathan Bird

Banner Elk, NC--Join us today as this junior sports management major from Stapely, Cheshire, England shares a little bit more of himself with the Bobcat fans.

1. What made you decide to come to Lees-McRae?
After speaking with Head Coach Christopher Whalley, he shared the same ambition towards winning and attitude in the game of soccer as I do. Furthermore, the facilities and professionalism of the soccer team at LMC helped me decide to come here as an added bonus.

2. How long have you been playing soccer?
I have played the sport since the very early ages of my life. Being brought up in the United Kingdom helped as it is the most popular played sport in the country.

3. What are your personal goals for this season?
I want to give 110% at every practice session and stay injury free. I also want to start each game and give my utmost to my team mates and myself.

4. What's your favorite soccer memory here at Lees-McRae so far?
In my freshman year we ran to the top of Sugar Mountain as a team tied together in groups of four. We have done it every year since and it helps us come together as a team and work hard.

5. Who has been the most influential person on your athletic career?
I had a coach from the age of 12 to 15 at a local team in England named William Atkinson. He taught me about the game and pushed me to the next stage in the soccer world and passed on important knowledge and skills I use every time I play.

6. If you weren't playing soccer, what other sport would you play?
I don't think I would not be playing soccer, but if I didn't I would probably be competing on mountain bikes.

7. What is your major and what do you plan to do with your degree?
I am currently working towards a degree in Sports Management and a minor in Criminal Justice, with the hope to go into the legal side of sports.

8. If you could travel back in time to any point in history, where would you go?
I'd go to the 1966 World Cup and watch England vs. Germany.

9. What is your favorite book?
Roy Keane's autobiography is my favorite.

10. What is your favorite food?

11. If you could visit any place in the world, where would it be?
I'd like to visit Africa.

12. What is one word that describes you and why?
Dedicated: I stay strong and true to anything I apply myself to continually improve myself.

Nathan's Story … I started off signing for a local team called Williston White Star where I played from the age of 5-6 to 12. From there I played my way into representing my school district in England. From the age of 14 I represented my county in the English School Boys League, where I was a two year captain and traveled and played all over the UK. From the age of 16 I went on trial with Port Vale Football Club and stayed with them until I was 17. At that time I was released to a semi-professional team called Stone Dominoes F.C. From there I was informed of trials for USA Scholarships during a weekend where coaches from across the states would watch you and show interest. I was spotted by LMC and asked to sign the National Letter of intent. Within four weeks of going to the trials I found myself in Banner Elk, NC representing the Bobcats.