9:44pm Monday 7th February 2011
By Dave Comeau
The University of Brighton has paid tribute to one of its football team's former players after he made his League One debut for Bournemouth on Saturday.
Striker Ben Williamson came on as an injury time substitute in the 1-1 draw with Leyton Orient, his first game for Brighton and Hove Albion's title rivals.
Michelle Bennett, Sports Development Manager at the university said: ”We are so pleased for Ben, it’s a truly great achievement to have gone from local and university league football to League One title contender in a space of two years. The University of Brighton has a great footballing set-up with teams competing at the highest levels of university football but Ben’s progress to League One is really something special.”
The 22-year-old signed for Bournemouth on a free transfer last week. After securing Williamson's signature manager Lee Bradbury told BBC Radio Solent: “Ben will be a great addition to the squad. He's done well and has scored goals in Spain. He's quick, he scores goals, and he's another striker that's in contention for us."
After leaving the University of Brighton the forward went on to sign for the Ryman League side Worthing in August 2009. In July 2010 he attended a trial at the Glenn Hoddle Academy in Spain where he impressed the former England manager and his team of coaching staff, earning himself a scholarship. Hoddle said at the time: “Ben impressed me with his all-round ability during the selection process and I am delighted that he has signed a full-time contract.”
Williamson is contracted to Bournemouth until the end of the season and will no doubt hope to play a key part in their fight for the League One title. Ironically it is Albion, whose new stadium is right on the doorstep of the University of Brighton campus, who are currently standing in their way.
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