Latrell’s finest hour! Velocity Football student reflects on promotion winning campaign with Oxford City FC

Promotion winning Velocity Football student Latrell Humphrey-Ewers described winning the National League South Play-Off Final with Oxford City FC as a moment he’ll cherish forever.

Born and raised in Oxford, the 20-year-old midfielder was called up by first-team manager Ross Jenkins with only 24 minutes on the clock while Hoops led St Albans 2-0 after forward Alfie Potter picked up an injury.

Further goals for Josh Ashby – one of Latrell’s coaches on the Velocity programme – and Josh Parker secured City promotion to the highest level of Non-League. The result means City will play in the fifth tier of English football for the first time in the club’s 141-year history.

Latrell, who grew up in Headington, said being part of the club’s first promotion in over a decade will be a moment he remembers forever.

“It’s been an amazing season,” said Latrell. “The whole team has been so supportive to help develop my game and the style of football we play is really enjoyable.

“It was a bit of a surprise to come on so early, but the boys told me to be confident and do what I do in training.

“My whole family was standing by the dugout which was special. I could never have dreamt winning promotion to the top tier of non-league with Oxford City FC would’ve been possible when I first enrolled with Velocity.

“It’s special as Oxford City is my local team and to be part of the day is something I’ll remember forever.”

Latrell’s finest hour in front of the BT Sport cameras was captured less than three years after he enrolled onto Velocity Football, Hoops’ full-time educational academy.

The former Oxford Academy student will graduate this summer with a Level 3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Sport, which equips learners with the skills and knowledge to pursue a career in sport. Latrell will remain with the club for an additional year to undertake a Level 3 Sporting Excellence apprenticeship to develop his football knowledge and learn fundamental skills and behaviours for the elite game.

He wasn’t the only student to play a key role in Hoops’ promotion. Classmates Jayden Carbon and Gerald Muchechetere also played under Ross Jenkins while Andre Bromfield joined in with training towards the end of the campaign.

Latrell said the development pathway provided by Velocity has been essential in his progress both on and off the pitch.

“I could not recommend Velocity Football enough to anyone considering a career in sport,” said Latrell. “Joining has been a really positive move for me and being part of Oxford City’s promotion winning team would not have been possible without it.

“My dream is to make it as a professional footballer, but many of my classmates who graduated this year are exploring the course’s other career pathways.

“It’s reassuring for anyone exploring the option of playing professionally that even if you don’t make the grade you’ll have the skills and knowledge of a variety of roles in the sports industry for a future career.”

Justin Merritt, Director of Football at Oxford City FC and Director of Velocity Football, added: “The achievements of Latrell, Jayden, Gerald and Andre this season epitomise Velocity’s commitment to supporting players of outstanding quality to reach their true potential on and off the pitch.

“We pass on our congratulations to each of them for playing a key role in Oxford City’s promotion to the National League.

“Furthermore, we’re equally proud of their development off the pitch which is a fundamental aspect of our work to equip students with skills and knowledge for life.”

Based at the RAW Charging Stadium, Velocity Football is Oxford City FC’s full-time educational academy. The programme is open to male and female students aged 16-23 and blends education with training and competitive fixtures.

Further information about the programme is available via www.velocityfootball.co.uk.

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