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NonLeague Hot Shot Set for Big Time

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By Ryan Allan

Another non-League starlet could be set to make the step up to the big time – Wolverhampton Sports striker Dan Westwood.

The 25-year-old has scored an incredible 54 times ahead this season. This includes five hat-trick in a row.

Westwood, a teacher, is the top scorer in the West Midlands Regional League Premier Division and he could go from the tenth tier of football to the first. It is reported that Premier League clubs are watching him but a move to the Championship may be the next logistical step.

The prolific forward takes heart from Andre Gray, the Burnley striker who began at Step 5 side Hinckley.

He got snapped up by Luton, then Brentford, before Turf Moor came calling. He won promotion to the Premier League last season and he has enjoyed an impressive first year at the top level, with some expecting an England call before long.

The pair are friends and he hopes to follow in his footsteps in the coming months.

“I wouldn’t say this level feels easy but I know I can do it, so now I want to test myself,” he tells the Guardian.

“They are some inspirational stories – especially Andre,” he added. “I’m still in touch with him, and it’s amazing what he’s done.”

Westwood has joined an agency run by former Aston Villa striker Julian Joachim.

He won’t be the only player from that level to progress.

Dwight Gayle played for Stansted before getting his big break in the game. He signed for Newcastle United for £10m last summer and is currently the Championship’s top scored.

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About Author

Former Swansea City and Kettering Town defender who has been managing the likes of Kettering Town u18s, Rothwell Town, Desborough Town and Wellingborough Town for 33 years as well as being technical director at AFC Rushden & Diamonds. Began in non-League journalism as editor of Team Talk magazine back in the early 1990s and then as editor of Non-League Daily, joining Pitchero to set up Pitchero Non-League in January 2011. Also works for the National League.

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