George Thomson was delighted to be back in full-time football after completing a move to Conference side Chester FC on Tuesday.
The attacking midfielder, from Long Clawson, joined from Northern Premier League side Kings Lynn Town where he was leading scorer with a formidable tally of 22 goals.
It marks the end of a long road back to the full-time ranks for the 22-year-old since his release from Nottingham Forest in 2010.
The Reds decided not to offer Thomson a professional contract despite ending his final season there as the successful academy side’s second top scorer.
He was invited to join Glenn Hoddle’s Academy in Spain and spent a season there before going part-time.
After a brief spell at Hinckley he was signed by Histon at the start of the 2012/13 season before joining Kings Lynn where he made 119 appearances.
Thomson, who is in the final year of a degree at Loughborough University, did well on a pre-season trial with the Cheshire club last summer. Budget constraints prevented the offer of a full-time deal, but Chester returned during the January transfer window.
Thomson told the Melton Times: “I’m obviously delighted to get this opportunity to play in the Conference at Chester.
“I want to thank Kings Lynn for everything they did for me while I was there.
“Now I’ve got this opportunity I need to work hard, hit the ground running and prove myself at this level.”
Chester manager Steve Burr added: “He’s the type of player who will fit in well at the club and I’m sure the fans will be pleased with the news.”
* See next week’s Melton Times for the full interview.