A TOP football coach who was regarded “as one of the best up and coming goalkeeper coaches in the English game,” has swapped goals for bricks due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Dean Neil, 34 had a great youth career and represented England Youth Team and went through the ranks at Charlton Athletic.
Dean, with a belief that the English goalkeeping syllabus was failing, decided to design his own using his experience of playing in Europe but when the Coronavirus pandemic hit, he decided to work hard rather than claiming benefits and furlough after learning the trade at a young age.
Dean spent the last 14 years representing teams at the highest level of non-league football, but the Coronavirus pandemic forced him back to his youth trade.
He told Politicalite: ” A friend invited me to work with him and his dad – building conservatories, but I later went into semi-professional football, playing around the UK.”
He said he returned to construction amid Corona to “set an example” to others who lost their jobs.
“People can see i can set an example and not claim and sit on my arse and i can work and keep things alive.” said Dean.
He said he was nervous at first to let people see he was working out of football but added: “There is no better ad for people to see you laying bricks, I’ve starting to get offers for work across the UK.”
“One thing i’m concerned is the future of bricklaying, with modern techniques, people are not cutting through.”
Despite his brave response to the pandemic, trolls have sent Dean abuse. “I have been mocked with people asking ‘why haven’t you got millions, but it doesn’t matter what money you got, its about who you are.”
“I wasn’t gonna sit on my bum and claim grants I was gonna get up and stay positive.”
“That’s what the building industry builds in you as a youngster.”
He added: “I’ve now got a problem I’m now working part-time as bricklayer and a goal keeper”
“I don’t know what to decide to keep going or go back to football”
“It is Hard to adapt, we do it cos we have to carry on”.