A former Bradford City apprentice has been shortlisted for the inaugural Asian Football Awards at Wembley next week.

Indy Aujla is vying with Zesh Rehman and Ipswich striker Michael Chopra for the player of the year crown in Tuesday’s lavish ceremony.

The 24-year-old right back from Clayton currently plays in Belgium for RRFC Montegnee, the fourth tier club that were briefly tied in with the Bantams for a plan-ned feeder arrangement.

But Aujla, who skippers the side, is hoping that the attention gained from his awards selection could earn him a move back to England.

The former Thornton Grammar School pupil has taken a roundabout route to the continent since being released by City in 2006 – at the same time as he was named the club’s young player of the year.

A brief spell with Mark Wright at Chester City as a non-contract player was followed by a spell under Terry Dolan at Guiseley.

He then went out to America on a two-year scholarship in Baltimore.

But a planned move to a college side was scuppered because the strict NCAA rules said he was ineligible because he had been paid to play at Valley Parade.

Aujla instead returned to England in the summer of 2010 to join Garforth Town before signing for Montegnee that December.

He said: “The football in Belgium is much more technical than at home. It’s totally different to the way I was brought up to play.

“Teams here play it out from the back, there are more balls to feet and one-twos. Players here don’t tend to get stuck in as much but they do like my aggressive style.

“We’ve had some problems off the pitch. The manager was sacked two months ago and we’re in a relegation scrap.

“But we’ve just signed four players from England, so hopefully we can help keep the club up. If we can do that, I might get a move back.”

Aujla is not expecting to pip former Bantam Rehman or Chopra at the national stadium. But he hopes the nomination can raise his profile for another shot at English football.

“Getting released by City after being the player of the year was a massive blow,” he admitted.

“The likes of Aingey (Simon Ainge) and Joe Brown were in the youth team when I was playing in the reserves with (Oxford captain) Jake Wright.

“I was down in the dumps for a while when they let me go but it’s also made me more hungry.

“I’m a stubborn type. If I’m told I can’t do something then that just makes me more determined to succeed.”

Albion Sports have also been nominated for the community club of the year.