• Guest Coach – David Raven
    Guest Coach – David Raven
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    Guest Coach David Raven Visits the Academy

    David Raven Guest Coach

     

    This week we were delighted to welcome current Warrington Town centre half David Raven to the academy at Ellesmere for the afternoon to share his experience and knowledge with the players.

    David has had a fantastic career in football, starting as a youngster at Liverpool FC, the team that he supported. David was at Liverpool under the management of current Newcastle Manager Raffa Benitez, who gave him his break in the first team. He traveled internationally with Liverpool playing with and against some of the top players in the world.

    After being on the fringe of the first team for some time David made the decision to move to Carlisle United where he made 137 appearances for the Cumbrian side.

    David moved again to Shrewsbury Town and Tranmere Rovers before making the big move north of the boarder to the Scottish Leagues. He played 153 games with Inverness Caledonian Thistle, where he became loved by the fans and a regular in the team. David helped Inverness Caledonian Thistle to the Scottish cup final with a winning goal against Celtic in the cup semi-final.

    Now pursuing a coaching career, David is working towards gaining coaching badges whilst playing for non-league side Warrington Town.

    David came to the academy at Ellesmere for the afternoon, spending the first hour of the session talking about his time in the game and taking questions from the players. David talked with passion about his love for the game and how he managed to keep focused on his own development during his time playing. The boys really tested him with some great questions!

    When asked what one piece of advice he would give, David said “It starts now! If you really want to be a player and you have the drive, determination and ability to do it, you can, but it starts now. Every day you give 100%, every day you look at doing more, every day you think and act like you are a professional player. Only that way can you make it. The ladder to being a professional player is hard to get on, but once you are on it, it’s even harder to stay on it, so you have to work at it. Never let anyone say you can’t, if you get the knock downs, get back up and keep going. Football is up and down, there will be lots of downs, and the downs can be very hard, but think of the up days, the highs of the game, the love you have for it, and that will keep you going. It starts now!!”

    David then delivered a fantastic session out on the pitch.

    It was another great experience for the players. Mick Brennan, Director of the academy said “what a great day for the lads, and for me. I love listening to people from within the game talk about their experience, and David was so inspirational. He has a true passion for the game and spoke honestly to the players. I think many could relate to him and really took on board what he said, there was total silence in that room as he was talking and each and every player was concentrating on what he said. A massive thank you to David for coming in and I’m sure we will see so much more from him over the coming season”.

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  • Academy Showcase Event Comes to Ellesmere
    Academy Showcase Event Comes to Ellesmere
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    The first showcase event of the season was held at the Ellesmere Academy site in Shropshire this month, with 60 players attending from both the Ellesmere Academy and the Manchester academy, along with local players from the area, all wanting to be seen by the club scouts and representatives in attendance.

    The showcase event was the third of the season by the academy, and following the great success of the first two, where a number of players have gone on to further trials with professional clubs or signed at semi-professional level, the staff at the academy decided to bring the format to the fantastic facilities of Ellesmere College.

    Scouts and club representatives from across the football pyramid were invited to the day, which saw 60 players take part in a variety of technical drills in small groups, led by the academy coaches including ex professionals such as  ex Manchester City star Jon Macken & ex Chelsea star Frank Sinclair. Following on from the sessions, the players were all involved in 11 v 11 games, under the watchful eye of the attending clubs.

    Academy Director Mick Brennan said “The day has been arranged to give the players a platform to show their ability, and also to forge links with the clubs out in this area. Over the past 10 years we’ve build up great links with the northwest clubs around the Manchester area, and since the launch of the academy at Ellesmere we’ve had great interest from the clubs in this area so we wanted to invite them in to see the players and try to work with them. From that point of view it’s been a huge success. Among the club representatives we have the top two clubs from the Welsh Premier League in attendance, both have identified players and are open to our coach’s recommendations throughout the season. That for us is a great pathway for these players to progress on into the professional game and get the opportunities they need”

    From the day at least 6 players were identified by clubs to go in for further trials and the academy coaches are no looking through the player’s performance on the day to see who may be recommended to those clubs who couldn’t be in attendance but have asked for players in certain positions.

    Head Coach Nigel Keogh believes these days are vital for player’s progression and opportunity “We are providing a platform for players to showcase themselves in front of people in the game that matter. They need that chance not only to do that, but to play alongside players of a high ability to be able to level themselves at where they are at, set targets for the future if they are not successful this time and build on their career”

    Ex Chelsea star and Academy coach Frank Sinclair said “Days like this are important because it helps players get spotted – it increases the pathways for players. Some are making it through the traditional way at being at big clubs, like I did at Chelsea, which is difficult to do because there are high standards.

    “Not all players have that opportunity and they may flourish when they’re at an older age.”

    “It’s good to be a part of it as I’ve experienced it and you just try to help as much as you can and encourage as much as possible.”

    Over the coming weeks the academy staff will be working with those clubs who were in attendance and those who have requested player details to arrange further trials at the clubs. The staff at the academy wish those players all the very best in these opportunities they have.

    The next showcase event will be held at the Manchester site on Friday 6th April. Places will be limited on this trial due to the huge demand, so ensure you have booked your place early.

    info@edukick.com

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  • Edukick Manchester at the England Training Ground
    Edukick Manchester at the England Training Ground
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    This week the Edukick Manchester players received an invite to the England base camp, St Georges Park. With the big freeze in the UK it wasn’t quiet the planned day, however the players still got to walk the corridors and see the facilities that England top players have graced, and learn so much more about the investment in the English game.

    The Edukick team initially were invited to the home of the England team by the PFA. With the academy’s close link with the PFA and following on from a number of successful PFA education sessions in the northwest, the invite spread to the PFA in the midlands for the team to attend a coach education course as ‘the team to coach’. Sessions were due to be delivered by a number of current and ex professional players, one of which was Ricardo Fuller, Ex-Premier league star and Jamaican international who had delivered a session the week prior to our Ellesmere team. Unfortunately the UK big freeze had got the better of the course which had to be cancelled and rescheduled for the new year at last minute, however not to be beaten by the weather the EduKick team still made the trip south to St Georges Park where they were warmly welcomed by the staff and given an exclusive behind the scenes tour of the impressive £105 million, 330 acres training facility.

    The facility set in the Staffordshire countryside, is the home to England’s 28 national teams. With 13 outdoor pitches, including a replica of the Wembley surface, a full-size indoor 3G pitch sanctioned high enough by UEFA to host international fixtures, a suite of rehabilitation and sports science areas, and an indoor futsal sports hall. St. George’s Park provides world-class facilities for all England teams ahead of international fixtures.

    Home of FA Education and all FA national coach education courses whilst the EduKick side were onsite the English referees were at the facility on a CPD event. St. Georges Park is the base for the England DNA philosophy, which outlines a vision for the future England teams and players.

    Sports science and performance is integral to St. George’s Park. Perform at St. George’s Park is a bespoke sports medicine, rehabilitation and human performance facility which combines cutting-edge technology with elite medical expertise, not only do the England and other UK football teams use this facility, but a number of sports in the UK now use this top performance facility, with Andy Murry, UK tennis star and twice Wimbledon champion visiting just weeks prior.

    The Edukick academy side were able to see where Barcelona had trained during pre-session and shown the impressive Hilton Hotel, which boasts a magnificent England manager’s suite and when the England side are together, is a private hotel for the stars.

    The amazing talent that has been on display at the facility is evident with the signature wall. All top athletes who visit the site are asked to sign the wall, with the likes of Harry Kane, Messi and all the England managers on there, it was evident to see St Georges Park is held in high regard not only by England football, but the wealth of visiting talent from around the world who come. Many overseas teams use the site for pre-season, and currently championship side Burton Albion use it as their training ground.

    A fantastic experience for the Edukick boys once again, a trip to remember. A big thank you to all the staff at St Georges Park for their welcome, and hopefully the January arrivals of players will have the chance to visit when the PFA session is re arranged.

    To join us in January you have to be quick to register. Contact us now – info@edukick.com

     

      

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  • A Record 13 Success Stories So Far This Season!
    A Record 13 Success Stories So Far This Season!
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    Edukick Manchester International Academy has hit an all-time record of 13 success stories from the group in just the first term of the season. The season for the academy kicked off in August for the Manchester based players and September for those on the residential campus at Ellesmere, and in just those 4 months of the season 13 success stories have come out of the academy.

     

    Throughout the programme on the academy, at both sites, the players are presented with a number of opportunities to showcase their ability. This first 4 months of the academy has seen some top names, great opportunities and fantastic experiences for the players, along with the first two showcase events hosted by the academy themselves.

     

    So far the academy has seen ex professional footballers such as Frank Sinclair, Jon Macken and Oldham Manager Richie Wellens lead on sessions, the players have attended numerous PFA sessions coming into contact with current players and coaches from professional clubs in the area and they have all attended two showcase events in Manchester, where scouts and club representatives have been present.

     

    The success stories are massive for the academy, showing the real opportunities that the staff and coaches can present and it’s great to see so many of our young men stepping up and taking those chances. We have seen this term players head off for trials with professional clubs, semi-professional sides signing players in their first teams and reserves and players represent the county following the coaches’ recommendations.

     

    This terms key success stories are:-

    Benjamin Hjun Woong Seol – Signed for Radcliffe Borough under the management of our own Jon Macken and Frank Sinclair, making appearances in the first team for the side.

    Click HERE to read more on Ben!

     

     

     

     

    Will Brookshaw – Selected from the showcase event in October by League one side Crewe Alexandra

    Click HERE to read more about Will at Crewe!

     

     

     

     

    Fedor Dubrovin – Spotted by League one side Blackpool FC at the October showcase event and has been shortlisted by their recruitment team for further observation.

    Click HERE to read more about Fedor!

     

     

     

     

    Kasper GRAF – Selected from the showcase event in October by League one side Crewe Alexandra and has been attending for over a month now, awaiting a final decision on if they will offer a contract.

    Click HERE to read more Kasper at Crewe!

     

     

     

    Chris Rumisek – Selected by semi-professional side Maine Rd for training and signed to play for their first team following the head coach watch one of the academy fixtures.

    Click HERE to read more about Maine Road and the Edukick Players!

     

     

     

     

     

    Clement FULLINGTON – Selected by semi-professional side Maine Rd for training and signed to play for their first team following the head coach watch one of the academy fixtures.

    Click HERE to read more about Maine Road and the Edukick Players!

     

     

     

     

    Jaime Quinones – Selected by semi-professional side Maine Rd for training a following the head coach watch one of the academy fixtures.

    Click HERE to read more about Maine Road and the Edukick Players!

     

     

     

    Will Mullock – Represented Shropshire County representative team following the academy coaches recommendation

    Zac Lennox – Represented Shropshire County representative team following the academy coaches recommendation.

    Click HERE to read more about the boys!

     

     

     

     

    Sudesh MARNER – Invited to train with League one side Oldham Athletic following the August showcase event in Manchester

    Click HERE to read more!

     

     

     

    Buhle Buka – Invited to train with League one side Oldham Athletic following the August showcase event in Manchester

    Click HERE to read more!

     

     

     

    Benjamin Hjun Woong Seol – Invited to train with League one side Oldham Athletic following the August showcase event in Manchester

    Click HERE to read more!

     

     

     

    Kingsley OKAGU – Invited to train with League one side Oldham Athletic following the August showcase event in Manchester

    Click HERE to read more!

     

     

     

     

    All of these success stories are fantastic news for the academy and the individuals involved. Its credit to those players who have taken those chances presented to them which has enabled them all to progress or sample football in the UK at a high level. Just getting that first foot on the ladder of the UK football pyramid is a taste of what they can achieve if they work hard, and having success stories such as Michel Bou Farah around training weekly only highlights what can be achieved by hard work and commitment.

     

    Head Coach Nigel said “Each one of these players has worked extremely hard to progress and grasp these chances and as a coach it’s great to see. They are all real opportunities and that can take them to the next level of their footballing career. Every day at the academy we talk about giving 100% in everything they do, in training, in games and off the pitch and you never know who is watching. Some of these successes came at the organised trials but some came when the boys were not expecting it, with recommendations from us as coaches, scouts turning up to training and games and the big thing is the recommendation by the coaches at the PFA sessions. Every time they step out representing the academy they are on show, and these lads have grabbed those opportunities. We are always there to help, advice and support all the lads, wherever they progress too and whatever level they are at. For these few it’s the first steps and some will be able to step up and match that level, some may need more time, but what a great honour and achievement for them to have that chance now. For us in the academy and as coaches it’s great to see, it’s a success for us too as that’s what we want to do, help our players move onto the next step at whatever that level may be”

     

    It’s a credit to Nigel and the coaches at the Academy that so many players have achieved this in the first term. So far this terms success stories have outnumbered whole season success stories from previous years and that’s very much down to the dedication by the coaching team and support team. The structured and quality delivery of the coaching along with the advice and guidance given has not only shown in the success of progressions, but in results as a team with the Manchester side displaying fantastic performances each game and receiving great feedback from visiting teams.

     

    Director of the Academy Mick Brennan Said “Its been a great first term. With the launch of the new Ellesmere residential site, the new Showcase Events in Manchester with some soon to be added at the Ellesmere site and the introduction of some top names in the area for football with Frank Sinclair, Jon Macken and Richie Wellens on the team supporting Nigel we couldn’t have asked for anything better. These success stories so early on in the season just highlight that the changes for this season are already paying off. We aim every season to provide our players with the best possible opportunities in the game, and its working! Linked in with the fantastic coaching our team provide and the whole support package from welfare and teacher in Manchester and Ellesmere, we have a great platform for young players to learn and train and succeed. It’s great to see and we will never give up on improvements in the programmes to bring maximum opportunities.”

     

    With further showcase events planned, more PFA sessions and guest sessions in the coming term it’s never been a better time to join our team. The academy are taking bookings now for both sites (Manchester & Ellesmere) for next season, but are also opening their doors to players who wish to come for the second half of the season of for a short course to have a taste of the academy.

    Contact the academy now for more information or to book.

    info@edukick.com

     

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  • Crewe Alexandra take in two Edukick Players
    Crewe Alexandra take in two Edukick Players
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    League two side Crewe Alexandra FC have taken an interest in two of the Edukick players from the Ellesmere site.

    Following on from the showcase event in October, where a variety of professional clubs were represented, Crewe Alexandra showed particular interest in two of our player, Will Brookshaw and Kasper Graff.

    Crewe Alexandra are a club steeped in player development. Players who passed through the ranks at Crewe include the England international players Geoff Thomas and David Platt, Welsh international Robbie Savage, and Northern Ireland internationals Neil Lennon and Steve Jones (Platt was the most successful, totalling more than £20 million in transfers and captaining the England team). All these were youngsters signed from other clubs, but Crewe also had considerable success in nurturing their own trainees – most notably full England internationals Rob Jones, Danny Murphy, Seth Johnson and Dean Ashton and Wales international David Vaughan.

    Edukicks Will and Kasper were immediately invited into the academy set up to train with the squads. Its a great chance for them to level themselves against some of the best players in the area and see first hand what commitment and dedication it takes to play at that level.

    Both boys have worked hard in training and have been a credit to the academy and school.

    Kasper is soon to represent Crewe in a competitive fixture for them to assess him in action and look at further talks on his progress.

    Well done boys.

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  • Michel’s Football & Academic Success
    Michel’s Football & Academic Success
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    Michel seen here with his teams mates in 2014/2015 with Edukick

    Michel Bou Farah studies and trained with the Edukick Manchester international Academy during the 2014/2015 & 2015/2016. A dedicated player and student Michel was always one to work hard and try to improve by that small percentage each week, his aim was to make a career out of the game and sport.

    Now, just 6 months on from completing his course with Edukick Manchester Michel has returned as a guest player and a role model to the other students on how the programme can make you successful.

    Michel has progressed onto University with Manchester metropolitan studying Sports science, but has also been signed by semi-professional side Lancaster City.

    Michel playing for Edukick at the Etihad campus

    Michel’s Academic progression came from the two years with Edukick studying the BTEC in sport. Michel was always focused on his football but he was aware he always needed a backup if his football career didn’t take off, so worked hard academically and achieve excellent results to enable him to progress onto university with his BTEC qualification. Now studying in Manchester as a first year university student Michel has many option open to him in the field of sport once he’s completed his course.

    In football Michel has earned himself a contract with Lancaster City FC. Lancaster City coaches saw Michel at one of the PFA guest sessions that he was involved in during his time at Edukick. Following this session the Lancaster city, and other semi-professional clubs, invited Michel in for training and further trails. Lancaster city were the side that won his signature, signing with the clubs Under 21’s side and featuring regularly for the team, breaking into the first team on occasions already this season.

    Talking to director Mick Brennan this week when Michel returned as a guest of Edukick Michel said “I owe everything I have in football to the Edukick programme. It has provided me a platform and an opportunity to progress in the game. The overall experience was fantastic, it allowed me to become more independent, living with my host, living away from home and having to work hard every day. I receive a great education which has meant I can progress onto university but mainly for me the structure and dedication in the football training at the academy has meant I can progress as I have. I would recommend anyone wanting to improve and give football a go in the UK to come to the programme, it offers so much”

    Michel continues to represent Lancaster City at U21’s and is doing so successfully this season, he’s also progressing well at university and in a fantastic role model for young athletes everywhere.

    Michels first day at edukick

    Mick Brennan, director of Edukick Manchester said “We are all delighted at Michel’s progression both in football and academically. In the time he spent with us on the programme he was dedicated and hard working in everything he did, he got a few knock backs at times but never gave up and was always positive. He was a great role model at the time for the students and players to follow but to now have him coming in, meeting the current players and sharing his success with them is fantastic. I know he has ambitions of progressing higher through the football leagues, and with his dedication and drive he will make it. We are very proud of his achievements. Well done Michel.”

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  • Ex Manchester United Super star with the Edukick Players!
    Ex Manchester United Super star with the Edukick Players!
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    Manchester Uniteds Cliff Training ground, the training venue for the Edukick players this week.

    Here at the Edukick Manchester Academy we are always trying to teach our players that you just never know who is watching, whatever the session or game.

    This week the boys have a great opportunity to train at one of Manchester United’s famous training grounds, the Cliff. The cliff training ground used to be home to the Manchester United first team players and has seen some massive superstars through those doors over the years. Today the facility is used by the United foundation and the Manchester united academy as a training venue.

    The PFA also use the facility for their coach education programme and this week invited the Edukick Manchester boys along for the whole week to take part in the sessions with some up and coming coaches from the northwest. Once again this is a great opportunity for the players to showcase their ability in front of some influential people in the game from a variety of professional clubs across the northwest. Not only can they do that, but they can also taste a sample of coaching from different coaches and clubs.

    Dwight Yorke with Edukick Players

    Over the past few weeks head Coach Nigel has been talking to the players about taking all their opportunities and always being aware that anyone could be watching, and true to form that happened this week on the first day of training at the Cliff. Not only were the boys on show to all the coaches on the programme, but Ex Manchester United Striker, Dwight Yorke came along to see the sessions and met the Edukick Players.

    Dwight Yorke made 147 appearances for Manchester united and was a treble winner in his first season with the club developing a famous partnership up front with fellow Manchester United striker Andy Cole. Dwight went on that season to win the premier league’s player of the year and two further premier league titles with Manchester united before his move to Blackburn rovers where he was back with his old strike partner Andy Cole once more. Dwight also represented his country, Trinidad & Tabago and in the 2009/2010 had a spell as assistant manager with the international side.

    The Edukick players were delighted to meet such a superstar and Dwight was a true gentleman posing for pictures with the players.

    Dwight is currently working with the PFA towards gaining his UEFA A coaching licence to pursue a further career in coaching and managing in the professional game.

    Another great experience for the Edukick players. It’s not every day you get to meet a true superstar from one of the world’s top football clubs.

    The Edukick players will be at the Cliff training ground all week with the PFA, so who know who they will meet next.

    To join us in Manchester for these fantastic experience contact us now to book for a January start!

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  • Richie Wellens Visits Ellesmere!
    Richie Wellens Visits Ellesmere!
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    Richie Wellins

    The players at the Ellesmere Academy site had another great guest session this week when former Manchester United and Leicester city start Richie Wellens visited the players. Richie, now a regular with the Edukick academy’s, spent the day at the Ellesmere site with the new intake of players on the academy. Starting with a question and answer session the boys were able to put to Richie all those burning questions about being a professional footballer, before he took to the field to coach them and share his vast knowledge of the game.

    Richie is now first team coach at league two side Oldham Athletic, so who better to to out on the field with the players putting them through their paces. Richie started his football career at Manchester United before a move to Blackpool in 2000. following his time at Blackpool Richie moved

    Coaching The Boys At Ellesmere

    on to Doncaster then to the championship with former Premier league champions Leicester city. Richie then returned to Doncaster for 18 months before joining a team local to Ellesmere, Shrewsbury Town under the management of Micky Mellon. After his playing career ended Richie took up his coaching path which has successfully seen him gain a first team coaches roll at Oldham, a club he played for making over 100 appearances.

    Having Richie at the academy training is a great opportunity for the boys to gain knowledge, talk first hand to someone who has worked hard to be successful in the game and to be coached by a top, pro club, first team coach.

    Richie in Action

    Director Mick Brennan said “its always great to have these guest sessions at our Academy, but especially having Richie involved is fantastic. Richie work a lot with our players in Manchester and has a great understanding of our ethos in the academy and brings genuine energy and great advice to the sessions he does. The players at Ellesmere would have been able to take a lot for the afternoon with him and hopefully we can get him along again soon to see their progress. A massive thanks to Richie for the session and talking with the players.”

    In the coming weeks and terms there will be more guest session for the boys to experience, bringing different angles of the game and different opinions too, and everyone is a great opportunity to showcase their ability. its not everyday you get coaches by a pro clubs first team coach.

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  • Guest Speaker – Kyle Wearing, Crewe Alexandra FC
    Guest Speaker – Kyle Wearing, Crewe Alexandra FC
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    Kyle visits the academy

    This week the players at the new boarding school site at Ellesmere College were treated to a guest speaker to share his expert knowledge first hand with them. Kyle Wearing, Sports scientist with league two side Crewe Alexandra, came to the academy to talk to the players about his role at the club, the importance of sports science with professional players and take questions to help the players’ development.

    Kyle, who has been to the Edukick academy on a few occasions, was formally a nutritionists at league one side Blackburn Rovers FC and has spoken to the Edukick players previously on correct diet and nutrition for the professional game. This time round the Ellesmere academy players got the best of both world, the understanding of sports science along with nutrition advice.

    Guest sessions such as this are vital part of our academy development. Having current professionals from the top clubs in the area come in and talk first hand to the players gives them a great insight into the professional game and backs up all the work the coaches at the academy do on a daily basis. The player can use these session to review their own part they play in doing all they can to perform at the highest level.

    Over the coming season we will have more guest speakers and coaches at the Academy sites to bring home professional football in the UK to the players.

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