Former Blackpool, Oldham Athletic & Current Birmimgham City Defender Neal Eardley takes a trip down memory lane, exclusively with the LLFC Official Website.
A local Llandudno lad, Neal was a clearly gifted footballer from a young age, he and his brother, current Llandudno FC first team coach, Sean, played alongside each other for Oldham Athletic, a proud moment for all in the Eardley family and for those friends who supported the boys through thick and thin.
Neal would continue to work his way up the English footballing pyramid, eventually signing for Blackpool in 2009 where he would go on to win promotion with the Seasiders and turn out for Ian Holloway's men in the Premier League, facing the likes of Gareth Bale's Tottenham & Wayne Rooney's Manchester United, a highlight Neal Says "Without a doubt playing for Blackpool in the Premier League and gaining promotion was fantastic for me. It's the league I've watched since I was a little kid and to be a part of it was unbelievable."
"For sheer passion and intensity for me it's the best league in the world, Some of the atmospheres are something that will never leave my side."
In May 2013, Neal put pen to paper on a three year deal, taking him to Birmigham City, unfortunately for Neal, cruciate knee ligament damage would end his season there. Despite the injury Neal remained upbeat and determined to come back fitter and stronger.
Alongside the club football, Neal also has a superb international record with Wales he says his greatest achievement was turning out for his country and representing the place he loves the most "My first full cap for wales is something I will never forget. I first represented my country at under 19 then at under 21 and finally in the summer of 2007 I got my first call up to the senior squad against Bulgaria."
"I came on with half an hour left and took everything in my stride. Being up against Martin Petrov and Stilian Petrov as a 19 year old was such an honour, playing a part in a 1-0 victory was something special aswell."
Despite his success Neal keeps his feet on the ground, making time to return home and watch his hometown club "I popped down the other week to see family and managed to catch an under 19 game."
"The facility is fantastic and the club should be very proud!
I wish them all the best in their quest for promotion and hopefully the next time I come down I can catch a game of my hometown club in the Welsh Prem."