Club News

Teenager gaining valuable experience out on loan

Mon 06 Feb 2017

Aidan Sopel is just 17 but the Peterhead youngster already has a senior medal to his name.
The winger is currently on loan at junior side Banks o' Dee, who reached the Aberdeenshire Shield final at the end of November.
Dee faced Inverurie Locos in the showpiece at Huntly's Christie Park, looking to become the first non-Highland League club to win the competition.
Locos triumphed 5-2 but the Spain Park outfit earned the plaudits for their run to the final, which included an outstanding 3-2 win over Formartine and scalps against Buckie and Turriff.
Sopel was among the goalscorers in the Formartine victory in Pitmedden, which was payback for a 7-2 drubbing at the same venue in the Scottish Cup just days before.
The teenager said: "I came on in the final and it was a good experience although we never played as well as we would have liked."
"Inverurie were the better team on the night and deserved their win but we did really well to get to the final in the first place."
"To knock out Formartine was a big result for us, especially after they beat us 7-2 a few days before."
"They were maybe a bit complacent after their win on the Saturday but our lads were fired up for the Wednesday match and it was nice to get revenge."
"That is definitely my highlight so far, especially because I scored one of the goals.  I remember I was one-on-one with their goalkeeper and slotted the ball in."
The Banff-based youngster's learning curve includes midweek training sessions with Peterhead, who have been monitoring his progress.
Sopel, a sports and fitness student at North East Scotland College in Fraserburgh, won a contract with the Blue Toon after impressing as a trialist substitute in a friendly at Lossiemouth in August.
He continued: "I felt I did well when I came on up at Lossie."
"Scott Brown played as a trialist the same night and we both did enough to catch the manager's eye and get offered a contract, which was good."
"I have been training with the Peterhead boys whenever I can on Wednesdays and I am getting to know them now."
"There is a lot of experience in the squad so it is a good opportunity for me to learn and I do notice a difference in my game."
Prior to signing for the Blue Toon, the teenager was a free agent after being let go by Inverness Caley Thistle where he had hoped to earn a full-time contract.
Charlie Christie, the Highland capital club's head of youth development, opted not to offer Sopel a deal.
The rookie continued: "I was released by Caley's under 17s, which was disappointing at the time because I would have liked to have tried full-time football."
"It was not to be, so I am at college now and that is going well."
"Hopefully I can get a few more games under my belt soon because Banks o' Dee have a lot of games to play."
"With all the cup matches we have been involved in this season, we have only played a handful of league matches so far so we need to catch up."
By Glenn Moir