Younger Wells to train with Hull City
Rico Wells his hoping to follow in his older brother Nahki's footsteps by playing professional football in the UK.
The 18-year-old midfielder has been invited to train with Hull City after impressing scouts of the English Championship club in a recent game for Richmond International Academic and Soccer Academy (RIASA).
Two other RIASA players, South Korean Ja Yun Lee and Peruvian Gonzalo Obando, will also spend time with the Tigers in a bid to gain more experience.
Wells is the third Bermuda player to enroll on the UK-based RIASA programme after his brother Nahki and goalkeeper Tahj Bell.
Mark Ellis, the RIASA football director, said Rico had shown glimpses of promise over the past three months but still had plenty of work to do.
“He's a small lad and he needs to build himself up,” said the ex-Bradford City winger. “He played against a Leeds youth team and did alright, but he struggled against Blackburn the other night, although he had played the night before and was probably tired.
“He's going up to Hull in a couple of weeks for a bit of training so he can gain a bit of experience and we will see how he copes.”
Wells' brother Nahki has been one of RIASA's success stories, becoming their first player to turn professional at Carlisle United last season. He has since joined Bradford City where he was made four substitute appearances this campaign.
Bell is still part of the RIASA programme and Ellis believes the young keeper can also join the pro ranks.
“Tahj is a funny one,” said Ellis, “one day he looks like a world beater and the next he makes some strange decisions. We're still hopeful he can make the grade somewhere and we're trying to get him an extended trial.
“He's got bags of potential so it will be interesting to see where he goes at the end of this year.”
Ellis, who recommended Nahki Wells to both Bradford and Carlisle, still keeps tabs on his former student.
He hopes the striker's decision to choose country over club by returning home for Bermuda's World Cup qualifies won't come back to haunt him.
“It's a tough one for Nahki who has had to keep on coming back to Bermuda,” Ellis said. “I spoke to Bradford's manager (Phil Parkinson) who said 'I've only been here a six weeks and he's been to Bermuda twice and he's on about going again'.
“It's a really tough one because he'd just scored a goal and then he's off Bermuda. I mean, it's no good playing for your national team if you're stuck in non-league football. To be fair to him he can't do right for wrong.”