Herd: 'Junior is the proudest moment in my life'
PUBLISHED: 11:00 21 December 2017
Ben Herd calls it his "proudest moment" - having a hand in getting Junior Morias a professional contract at Peterborough United.
The striker joined the Clarence Park ranks at the same time as Herd and within four months had secured a contract with the League One side.
And a chance conversation in the bar after a home game led to Morias joining Herd’s Pro Performance Academy and the rest is history.
“Junior is the proudest moment in my life,” said Herd, and it was hard not to believe him. “Even now I get goosepimples when I think about it.
“To actually have a positive influence on someone’s life and to give them a chance is incredible. It’s such a nice feeling.
“He’d been at Boreham Wood and there was nothing really going on there and then he came to St Albans and I was talking to him after a game and asked him ‘do you want to be a footballer’?
“He was really sheepish at first and sort of mumbled yeah. So I said ‘look me in the eye and say you want to be a footballer’. So he did and then I asked ‘where do you want to play? Premier League’? And he started mumbling again so I said aim high, aim for the top but believe it as well.
“I told him it would be different but to come and see what we did and to be fair to him he came in on the Monday and within one training session he bought into it.
“He did 19 weeks with us and even if he had a game on the Tuesday night, he come in, not to posture but to work hard and run himself into the ground.
“And he’d be electric in games.
“He worked so hard but then didn’t come in for a couple of days, saying he had a family problem.
“I thought it sounded odd so I rang him up and called his bluff by saying ‘which team have you been training with today’.
“And that’s when he told me.
“When I’m at St Albans Q&As now, his name comes up more than any of the current players. He was only there for four months or so.
“He left a good impression but from my point of view working with someone for that length of time was incredible.”