THEY say age is nothing but a number.

And young entrepreneur Henry Wright is proving the old adage true after becoming a football owner – at the age of 19.

After being rejected at professional football trials in Lithuania last summer left him heartbroken, Henry made the bold decision to launch a brand new club in his home village.

Elmstead Market FC was formed and they are now going from strength to strength, in Essex and Suffolk Border League division five.

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The team, made up predominantly of young players who grew up in the village, currently play their home games at Mile End, Colchester.

Henry, who is now 20 and is also Elmstead Market FC's first team assistant manager and first-team coach, could be the world’s youngest football club owner.

He said: “I wanted to keep going with my football career but I thought I would take the step towards making my own football club.

“I contacted the Essex and Suffolk Border League and asked if I could start a new team up and enter it in the league and they came back and said they were happy to have us affiliated.

Brentwood Live:

“I had to come up with ten roles like welfare officer, manager, assistant manager, chairman and safeguarding officer and at first, I had myself down for everything!

“At the time, I was working at Wetherspoons and playing semi-pro football in the area – it was a very busy time as I had work during the day, I played football in the evenings and all night, I’d be working on Elmstead and only get a couple of hours’ sleep!

“At first, it really was just my friends and it started with a core of about 16 of us but it was a bit of a domino effect.

“Now we have over 100 people with two teams – a first team and a reserves – and we’re looking to get an under-18s for next season.

“James Gentry was secretary and was absolutely brilliant and without him, I wouldn’t have been able to get the club off the ground.

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“Josh Beckerleg, the first-team captain, has been with me from the start – he always believed in me and the current secretary Brandon Roberts, who’s also first-team manager, has also been brilliant.”

Owning a football club has been a bit of an eye opener at times for Henry, who still has hopes of making it as a professional footballer.

He said: “I remember about 30 minutes before kick-off in our first game against Bradfield Rovers, someone said to me ‘the goals are still locked up’.

“I had to unlock them and put them on the pitch and then we got about 20 minutes into the game and realised there were no corner flags!

Brentwood Live:

“We’ve got an awful lot of outgoings; every month, I’ll get a bill through for £500 for this, £500 for that.

“I’ve had to dip into my own pocket a couple of times but it’s worth it, for the love of the club.”

So, what’s it like being in charge of everything, at such a young age?

“Often, I’ll be younger than the people I’m making decisions about, which is tricky for me,” said Henry, who is now 20 years old.

“I felt a bit out of my depth at first and when I first started, I had no idea that it involved the amount of work it does.

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“You have to sort out all kinds of fines, player registrations on the day but it’s worth it.

“I would love to get us to the National League South within 20 years – that is almost my life goal.

“I’ve got an Elmstead shirt on my wall now and every morning I wake up and see it.

“I’ve started this football club and I want it to be my legacy.”