We take a holistic approach to the development of young people in
our academy. For the 22/23 season we will also be running a girls academy.

Throughout the course, we will try to teach and enhance a variety of life skills that can be taken across any potential future path a person decides to take. The player is at the centre of our model for success. The games programme, facilities, and coaching are a few of the key aspects we focus on to enable each player to reach their potential.

Players benefit from:

  • 4 x 2-hour training sessions a week with UEFA licensed coaches and ex-professionals
  • Futsal fixtures
  • Up to a total of 16 hours of football per week including training and fixtures
  • 12-15 hours of lesson time
  • Access to expert tutors
  • Excellent player welfare support
  • Player reviews to develop your performance
  • Access to VEO for video analysis
  • Social media coverage
  • Competitive league and cup fixtures
  • Technical and tactical sessions
  • Gym training and program
  • Pre, mid, and post-season fitness testing
  • Specialist goalkeeper training
  • Access to our full-time physiotherapist
  • Monthly session with the first team staff
  • Sports massage sessions and much,
    much more…

The games programme

We have created an excellent games programme. This includes a variety of competitive fixtures that give our young players the opportunity to face different problems and achieve several learning outcomes.  For example, we can focus on possession football against academy teams such as Barnsley FC, Braford City FC, Huddersfield Town FC, Salford City FC, Bolton FC, and Port Vale FC. Then we face different types of tests against more physical and direct teams such as Bury AFC 1st team, Cheadle Town FC 1st team, Stockport Town FC 1st team, and Cheadle Nomads 1st team. This variety provides much-needed realism for our young players that is not always possible in the typical u23 academy fixture.

Playing Philosophy

In possession we encourage all players to enjoy and embrace the ball. We want individuals to feel comfortable with the ball at their feet and be competent under pressure, in turn allowing all our teams to be able to play quick possession-based football at a high level. We do this by creating passing/receiving opportunities, by understanding clever movements and rotations that enable the team to break lines and play through the thirds of the pitch.

Out of possession we aim to win the ball back at the earliest opportunity, pressing when possible and making play predictable. If the press isn’t on, we retreat to get organised, compact, and ready to re-press in the middle third.

In transition we expect individuals to delay, deny and deflect (3D’s) play to give teammates the opportunity to recover. Upon regaining possession, we aim to make the pitch big, break lines, attack with precision and pace (3R’s – release early, run it, retain to build)

Identity & Values

An environment where everyone is valued. We make it our responsibility to develop our young players by using the power of football.

The success of our academy teams is underpinned by a unique way of playing, learning, and thinking.

Developing players in “THE COUNTY WAY”

Outrun opponents
Understand your role
Never give up
Team player
Yes attitude

To carry out these values to the best of their ability players will need support from all key stakeholders such as parents, family/friends, fellow teammates, and staff. Key stakeholders will be required to work together to ensure this happens. Ultimately, we all want to do our best by the individual player so he can fulfil his potential.

A huge part of the academy aims is teaching young players to take ownership of their own development to create lifelong habits. Every academy member is provided with a gym programme, allowing time to take part in additional individual training drills, and analyse video clips of their own performance via access to the cutting-edge technology the club employs through Hudl. They are tasked with identifying their own personal goals, while the coach supplements these with team goals.


We are very excited to have partnered with Puma again, who will provide all our academy players with top quality training and match kits. This deal enables us to offer more training garments than in previous seasons. The players will receive the following bundle:

  • 2 x liga training jersey
  • 2 x liga ¼ zip sweat
  • 1 x liga rain jacket
  • 2 x liga short core
  • 1 x liga training pant
  • 2 x liga socks
  • 1 x liga polo
  • 1 x liga training pant
  • 1 x backpack
  • 1 x liga casuals padded jacket.


The players keep their training kit. Some players may qualify for financial support, information on this can be found in the player handbook. Training kit will remain the same as the 21/22 season, so second year players won’t have to repurchase training kit.

Lastly, as part of our Academy player of the month award, in partnership with PUMA, our chosen player will get a PUMA ‘goody bag’ with selected PUMA items such as undershirt, undershorts, gloves, snoods, water bottles, etc

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Sports Coaching and Development

Two year full-time course: Equivalent to 3 A-Levels

Website and specification: Sports Coaching and Development (2019) | Pearson qualifications
Mandatory Units (Learners complete and achieve all seven units)
Health, Wellbeing and Sport Sport Development
Developing Coaching Skills Applied Coaching Skills
Self-employment in Sport and Physical Activity Careers in the Sport and Active Leisure Industry
Research Project in Sport  
Optional Units (Learners complete five units agreed by Tutors)
Sport Psychology Practical Sports Application
Nutrition for Physical Performance Influence of Technology in Sport
Anatomy and Physiology in Sport Ethical and Current Issues in Sport
Sporting Injuries Marketing Communications
Functional Sports Massage Technical and Tactical Skills in Sport
Fitness Testing School Sport Delivery
Fitness Training Sports Tourism
Corporate Social Responsibility in Sport Sport and Leisure Facility Operations
Rules, Regulations and Officiating in Sport Organising Events in Sport and Physical Activities

The aim of the course is to enable you to explore the breadth of the sports industry, from health and fitness to sports coaching, so that you are able to make informed choices regarding your future employment opportunities.

Successful students move on to work in coaching roles, community sport projects, health promotion, fitness instructing and sports rehab jobs.

The course will allow you to achieve UCAS points for progression to University courses in sports development, management and coaching.

Entry Requirements

A minimum of five GCSE subjects Grade 4 or above including English or Maths.
A programme to resit English or Maths will be available in addition to your studies if required.


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