Oxford City have launched a new academy set-up to boost the pathways available to youngsters coming through the National League South club.
The Hoops are merging their junior academy set-ups with Ignite Sport UK for season 2020/21 and beyond following a strategic review of operations with their official education and community partner.
Announced this week as officials at Court Place Farm prepare for the return of football, the move will see coaching support, management and administration of all Oxford City FC junior and youth teams provided by Ignite Sport UK.
New video technology is also being introduced into the academy as part of the investment to enable player analysis across all age groups and support overall professional development.
CLUB UPDATE | Oxford City Junior and Youth Football have merged with @ignitesportuk to form a stronger and closer collaboration.
— Oxford City FC (@OxCityFC) July 17, 2020
Oxford City’s director of football Justin Merritt said: “Having everyone play for our flagship club will improve overall identity and strengthen our junior pathway programmes.
“Ignite will provide the structure around delivery, coaching and administration which will provide a professional system. Together this will create a clearer structure that will benefit everyone and create an environment in which coaches and players can achieve even better outcomes.”
Academy head Mickey Lewis said: “This is a logical and significant step forward for City and Ignite and will result in greater results for everyone.
“We are excited about the future; this will enable us toprovide better coaching and provide young players with a real opportunity for progression. The aim is to see even more academy graduates represent the Oxford City first team.”
Ignite Sport UK is a registered training provider for sport and education qualifications, working in further education, apprenticeships, and adult education.
Current Oxford City players Zac McEachran, Ben Barratt and Craig Fasanmade, and assistant manager Andy Ballard are all graduates of the academy.
Former New Zealand U23 coach Des Buckingham, Forest Green Rovers’ Udoka Godwin-Malife and Reading’s Garath McCleary are also graduates.
Make sure you get your copy of The Non-League Paper from the weekend for the latest news as Non-League comes out of lockdown and the results of our ‘return to football’ survey in partnership with the Football Supporters Association!
In print and online 24/7 as a full digital replica since midnight on Saturday, The NLP’s news pages are the only place to stay informed and entertained while getting the big picture from across Non-League in one place.
Get ahead of the game with our free weekly newsletter and never take a chance on missing your paper on a Sunday or Monday again!
Subscribe today to have the printed edition delivered to your doorstep or enjoy the full digital edition from the comfort of your own home or wherever you are when it pops up on your mobile or device!
The only national paper devoted to Non-League football, as a digital edition The NLP is available whenever and wherever you want it.
Try a free sample of a recent edition today if you’re staying home or on the run by clicking here. You’ll save cash as a one off or regular digital reader and the pages still rustle like the printed paper too!
Images courtesy of The Non-League Paper & @OxCityFC/Twitter