Sydney FC’s Youth Academy is on the road to producing the next generation of Hyundai A-League stars after being officially unveiled.
Players and coaches from the club’s seven Academy squads paraded in front of the Sky Blues faithful at half time in Sydney FC’s match with Brisbane Roar at Allianz Stadium tonight.
The two year project has been the vision of Chairman Scott Barlow and the Sydney FC board of directors who have overseen the Academy’s development, appointing Academy Director Kelly Cross, who has managed the Academy’s coaching and playing style.
“We are entering a new phase in Sydney FC's history. This is the most important strategic initiative since the club's inception and is the beginning of a new era for the club,” said Chairman Scott Barlow.
“The Sydney FC Academy has been the missing link for the club over the last eleven years but it will now help ensure the future long term health of the club.
“It’s our aim to deliver a pathway for young footballers to achieve their dreams of becoming professionals and playing for Sydney FC.
“This has been a two year project already but it is still only the very beginning for us.
“I look forward to the day we see our Hyundai A-League team full of players produced by our Academy.”
The club’s Technical Core, led by Sydney FC board member and former FFA Technical Director Han Berger and including Sydney FC Head Coach Graham Arnold and Assistant Coach Steve Corica, has laid the foundations of a playing style and philosophy for the years ahead, which it is hoped will ease the pathway from the Academy to first team football.
Academy Director Kelly Cross, another Sydney FC Technical Core member, is confident of producing a new batch of Sky Blues’ stars with the club providing the young players with a professional environment to learn and develop their football skills.
“Sydney FC’s players are being provided with the very best facilities and coaching in order to give them the best chance to reach their goals,” he said.
“They have access to first class coaching, following the unique the Sydney FC football philosophy. We have built a challenging learning environment, based on player engagement and personal responsibility. For example, the players have access to a digital video analysis platform, with video clips of every match and also regular opportunities to evaluate video of training sessions.”
“We have also had tremendous results from the player logbooks, where all players submit their evaluation of every training session and match, with coach interaction driving the learning outcomes."
“This is a long term commitment to the growth of football in Australia and the growth of Sydney FC. It is an exciting time for the club.”
The Sky Blues scouts and coaches have spent the last year searching far and wide for talented players in New South Wales with the potential to develop within the Academy model. The club has 90 new players and 12 new coaching and fitness staff which has more than doubled the personnel at Sydney FC.
The squads come together four times a week and include under 13’s, under 14’s, under 15’s, under 16’s, under 18’s, under 20’s, right through to the Championship winning Foxtel National Youth League squad or NPL first grade.
The Academy squads begin their season in March this year with the first grade playing in the NSWPL 2 competition.
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