After plenty of social media speculation over the past 3-months, that has only increased with the opening of the January transfer window, the Club can confirm that the sale of our very own Sorba Thomas to Championship side Huddersfield Town AFC has been completed for an undisclosed Club record fee.
Sorba joined the Club 6-years ago in 2015 as a scholar within our renowned BW PASE Academy as an impressionable yet confident budding footballer, who has worked tirelessly ever since to firstly earn recognition of Academy Manager Cameron Mawer, then later First Team Manager Luke Garrard, while always having the support and confidence of our Chairman Danny Hunter.
During his time as a youth team player at Meadow Park, Sorba won multiple National College titles with the Club. He also represented England at College level on numerous occasions, in what was unquestionably one of the Academy’s most successful periods in its 20-year existence.
In that side alone, Sorba lined up alongside Ben Goodliffe (Wolves, Dagenham & Redbridge and Sutton United) and Iliman N’Diaye (Sheffield United), amongst others. However, throughout his time with us, Sorba was undoubtedly the Academy’s brightest light and will go down in Club folk law as one of the most talented players ever to graduate from our elite BW PASE Academy.
Upon graduating from the Academy at the end of the 2017/18 campaign, a season which also saw Sorba make his Wood First Team debut at Meadow Park and feature in our National League play-off final defeat at Wembley Stadium. Sorba then put pen to paper to sign his first professional contract with the Club in the summer of 2018, a contract that was further improved just a year later, with a brand new 3-year contract in July 2019.
The 2019/20 season saw the pandemic hit the world and though our league campaign was cut short, it still proved to be Sorba’s breakout season in a Wood shirt, as he finally realised that he more than belonged at senior level. As his belief grew, his budding reputation began to gather momentum and through some sparkling performances during the campaign he was starting to get noticed by Football League clubs all the way up to the Championship.
Over the past two seasons, whilst working alongside Luke Garrard, Cameron Mawer and the Wood management team at Meadow Park, Sorba has improved drastically, by refining his indisputable raw talents to quickly become one of the most exciting talents outside the Football League, with some devastating performances at National League level.
Those performances attracted the attention of the English Football League scouts from across the country, including Sunderland, Charlton, Peterborough and Huddersfield, amongst others. His displays also led to Sorba being called up to Paul Fairclough’s England C squad last March alongside his young Wood teammates Kane Smith and Kabongo Tshimanga to take on the Welsh C side. However, the international fixture fell foul to COVID-19.
Sorba now joins an elite group of player’s that we like to call our “PASE Pro’s.” These lads have graduated from the Club’s Academy to join established Football League outfits, including the likes of Lee Hodson (Watford, MK Dons, Rangers), Kyle Vassell (Peterborough United, Blackpool, Rotherham United), Pelly Ruddock (West Ham United, Luton Town), amongst many, many others…
Upon Sorba joining a Championship outfit, Chairman Danny Hunter said ”I’ve just read the press release and in truth, what a great job everyone’s done in developing him, in caring for him and in giving him the life lessons that he’ll need to succeed. I’ve watched this talented boy struggle get to the ground every day from the East End of London in rain, sleet and shine to complete his studies and play the game he loves. I’ve seen him improve his mentality and focus, while developing physically
“That said, now is the right time to hand him over to a great Championship club like Huddersfield Town and let them continue his development. I’m quite certain that if Sorbs stays injury free [and he’s never injured, touch wood.] If he continues to work hard and gets that bit of lady luck that we all need, then we’ll soon be hearing a lot of great things about him. I know I’m biased but I think it’s more than possible that Sorbs can become a Welsh International within 18-months if he gets a chance to perform. He’s got all the attributes you need to progress; he’s quick, he sees a pass, he’s strong, he’s got great balance, he can go both ways and he gets important goals and assists, but whatever happens I’m just very proud of him.” Hunter concluded.
Following years and years of building a close working relationship with Sorba and nurturing his development on pitch, Manage Luke Garrard had this to say on Sorba’s big move, “I remember fondly when Sorba first came to BW PASE Academy, he was a lad that believed in his ability and would work tirelessly at his craft and always tried to better himself.
“He wouldn’t progress into the First Team until his 3rd year at the Club, but he really made a name for himself last season with some outstanding performances, with sides having to double up on him because he had that much of an impact…
“To see Sorba finally get the move he deserves is like a “proud father moment” for me and many at the Club. Having spoken to him to discuss this opportunity once terms were agreed between the two Clubs, Sorba was left speechless and anyone that knows him knows that’s not very often the case.
“Sorba understands what’s at stake and the chance he has given himself. Huddersfield Town are an established Championship side, who were in the Premier League just two seasons ago. It will be a great environment for Sorba in the next stage of his development, with fantastic facilities, great coaching and a track record of success nurturing players.
“A special mention must go to Academy Manager Cameron Mawer who was instrumental in his development, as well as of course the Chairman, who had an unbelievable care for Sorba throughout his time with us. Both can take huge pride in getting him the move into the Championship.” Garrard concluded.
On behalf of everyone at Boreham Wood FC, we wish Sorba the very best of luck in this next exciting chapter of his footballing journey.
Good luck, Sorba – always one of our own!
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