Mansfield Town youngster scoops PFA community award

Alistair Smith in action for Mansfield Town.
Alistair Smith in action for Mansfield Town.

Mansfield Town youngster Alistair Smith has been awarded this season's PFA Community Champion award.

The award recognises the efforts of players, who over the course of the season, go the extra mile to attend activities run by community schemes, get involved and really help to make a difference within the Community.

Mansfield Town Football in the Community have chosen 19-year-old midfielder Smith as the recipient of the award for the 2018/19 campaign, having been impressed with the youngster's attitude and approach towards activities such as Premier League Primary Stars and Disability Football.

John Hudson, the PFA's director of corporate social responsibility, said: “The PFA believes that players who make that extra effort and contribution during the season should be recognised for their support and involvement in the local community.

"The Award will hopefully raise awareness of the great contribution and importance many of our members attach to their roles off the pitch. We would like to offer our congratulations to this season’s recipient of the 2018/19 PFA Community Champion Award.”

Gary Shaw, community manager, said “Alistair has demonstrated the upmost professionalism when attending our sessions and has shown a real enthusiasm when attending, joining in and really encouraging the participants.

“Being a young pro I think the youngsters have something real to aspire to with Alistair as they can see that with the right effort and dedication young people can become professional sportsmen, and I think that’s why Alistair has been proactive within sessions and is the deserving recipient of this season’s award.”

The midfielder made his Stags debut in the Checkatrade Trophy earlier this season and has been a prominent figure within the matchday squad, earning himself an 18-month contract extension back in January having impressed boss David Flitcroft with his attitude.

Smith, who turns 20-years-old later this month, joins the likes of Paul Anderson and Jamie McGuire in receiving the recognition for his efforts within the community.

Reflecting on why Smith was recognised; head of community Mark Hemingray said: “I’ve had nothing but good feedback about Alistair from our coaches. On matchdays he’s always very talkative with our mascots and helps to make their experience the best it can be, whilst at the numerous Premier League Primary Stars sessions he’s attended, he’s had lots of words of advice and encouragement for the kids who really thrive on that.”