• Andy Moore

15-year-old Leah shows the boys how it’s done after being picked for Derby County Women

A Derby secondary pupil is proving her talent at the beautiful game after she was scouted to play for Derby County Women's Football Club on a school outing.

Leah Broughton, a year 11 pupil at Alvaston Moor Academy on Bracken’s Lane, plays for the club’s under-16s side. Leah, 15, impressed football scouts when she was taken by the school to Derby County’s ground one evening as part of an opportunity to play on the same pitch as the Rams.

Leah has been playing football since she was six years old. She joined Derby County Women having previously played for Heanor Town, as well as other mixed teams in the past.

Leah said: “My cousin taught me how to play football. When I played my first game, everyone said I was good, but I didn’t believe it!”

Since joining Derby County Women, Leah has certainly impressed on the pitch. She was her team’s top goal scorer in her first season for the club, putting 26 balls in the back of the net. She has also recently won a school penalty shoot-out, playing against boys as well as girls, and was part of a side that won an ACES national tournament when she was 13.

Leah now trains for two hours a week with Derby County, and plays a game every weekend. The side compete in the Central Warwickshire Girls Football League. Despite getting nervous before the start of each game, she said she gets a huge buzz out of the action and even does not mind getting muddy when it rains!

She said: “When you’re running during the game, you don’t feel out of breath because you’re more focused on the game. You don’t really know how out of breath you are until you stop running.”

Women’s football is believed to be the fastest growing sport in the world, with many elite clubs taking on women’s squads, and the game thriving at grassroots level too.

School head teacher Michelle Strong, who has been in post at the 850-pupil school since September 2021, said: “I’m just exceptionally proud of her – being a football-mad head teacher!

“I’ve always followed football. I have run a girls’ team before. Derby County have come into our school to help pupils with their mental wellbeing, amongst other things.

“I wish I’d had those opportunities when I was a kid, because girls couldn’t play football when I was a girl.”

When she finishes at Alvaston Moor this summer, Leah is going on to Loughborough College to do a course in sports coaching and management. She hopes to use all the skills she has learned to become a PE teacher when she is older, having thoroughly enjoyed her sports lessons at Alvaston Moor.

Photos: Leah Broughton in her Derby County Womens’ kit outside Alvaston Moor Academy, and in action on the pitch.

For further information please contact Lucy Stephens at Penguin PR on 0771 983 9446 or email

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