COLCHESTER teenager Kris Kanapathy is all set to live the American Dream after landing a football scholarship in the United States.

The promising 18-year-old will fly out to America next month to begin what will initially be a two-year stint at the HawkEye Redtails, before transferring to a four-year university academy base.

Kanapathy, who will be coached by compatriot Robbie Carroll at Redtails, will be based in the city of Waterloo.

The talented attacker says he is looking forward to making a positive impression, as he seeks to eventually secure a professional contract.

He said: “I’m grateful for the opportunity – I can’t wait to get started.

“I’ve very excited about it.

“It’s something different and it’s something that I’ve always looked into, if I didn’t get a scholarship in the UK with a professional team.

“I always knew that there was a possibility that it could happen and my parents have been very supportive.

“To try and eventually turn professional is the end goal for me – it would be great to do something I love as a career.

“I’ll go there and do my best to make it happen.

“I’m not putting too much pressure on myself and I know what I want to do.”

Kanapathy has had to embark on a gruelling process to secure the scholarship, overcoming injury setbacks along the way.

The Colchester Sixth Form College student, who is currently sitting his A-levels, has embarked on a number of trials, including a football camp at St George’s Park.

He also had to show his academic credentials and had to pass exams in order to book his place at the Redtails.

“It’s a very thorough process and they look into your whole background and the teams that you’ve played for,” said former Philip Morant School pupil Kanapathy, who will also undertake a business degree as part of his scholarship.

“I started it when I was 16 and it’s quite a long process to go through to where it is now.

“It’s been quite tough not being able to get a scholarship with one or two teams, in this country.

“I think teams in the past were a bit worried about my physicality, at the age of 16.

“But over the last two years or so, I’ve grown quite a lot.

“If you can try and get professional in a different country, I’m willing to do that.”

Kanapathy will fly out to Chicago on July 26 ready for pre-season, with the new season starting on August 10.

He added: “For the first month, there’s no school – it’s just about pre-season and getting fit.

“It’s good because it gives me a bit of time to acclimatise.”