Leverock continues Bermuda invasion at Ilkeston

  • Bermuda's Ilkeston Town trio: Lejuan Simmons (left), Dante Leverock (centre) and Antwan Russell.

    Bermuda's Ilkeston Town trio: Lejuan Simmons (left), Dante Leverock (centre) and Antwan Russell.

Dante Leverock will look to follow in the footsteps of fellow Bermudians Lejuan Simmons and Antwan Russell when he embarks on pre-season training with English club Ilkeston FC.

The former Dandy Town striker is set to join the Evo-Stik League Northern Premier club when the team resume training next month once he completes his education at St Mary’s University in London.

Leverock is no stranger to the club, having trained with them this season and played in friendly matches, but he missed the registration deadline and was unable to make his competitive debut.

Looking to make an impression on the coaching staff, Leverock said he is ready to make the most of the opportunity.

“I was in London this year at St Mary’s University, but I'm moving to Ilkeston to play full-time although I'm still going to finish my last year of university and take coaching badges as well,” said Leverock.

“I've trained with Ilkeston for about a month but I only played friendly matches because I missed the registration deadline to play. With that being said, I will be in the first team squad next season but it’s still up to me to prove myself to the coaches so they can see what type of role I play with the team.

“It's been great to go to Ilkeston through Nigel Harrop (former Bermuda resident), he's a great guy as well as Paul Scope, creating the link with Bermuda Hogges and Ilkeston. The partnership can be very beneficial for Bermuda football as Ilkeston are a well structured and ambitious club and having Antwan and Lejuan there made it that much easier.”

Former Bermuda Football Association (BFA) technical director Derek Broadley, who coached Leverock in the National Academy, recommended him to his current university.

Leverock, cousin of top Bermuda player Khano Smith, was involved with Staines Town FC in the Blue Square Conference South from July to November of last year before picking up an injury.

He also went to play for Leatherhead FC from February to April.

Having gained valuable experience over the past 12 months that has prepared him for the rigours of the professional game, the 21-year-old is ready to prove his worth and force his way into the first XI.

“Now that I'm at Ilkeston FC playing full-time and being in the professional environment can only help me to develop as a player so I'm looking to get stronger and fitter in the off season and go back in July focused.

“It's been a great experience playing at a higher level, being exposed to all the aspects of football especially the physical and tactical side of the game. It has helped me to develop and become a better player.

“Being over In England has taught me how important it is to take care of yourself off the field. Going to the gym, eating right are very important if you want to be successful.

“I've learned a lot from coaches from my previous teams and other players.”

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Published May 15, 2013 at 8:00 am (Updated May 14, 2013 at 6:25 pm)

Leverock continues Bermuda invasion at Ilkeston

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