Jamie Coyle has started his new role with Maidstone United’s football academy.
The first team player/coach is working alongside Jay Saunders, Tom Parkinson and Jim Bodle to teach and train 75 students who are on a two-year sports diploma with the club.
It’s a familiar role for the 32-year-old who set-up and ran a similar scheme at North West Kent College for the past 10 years.
Talking about the move to the Gallagher Stadium for his day job, Coyle said: “It is an opportunity to work in a more professional environment with regards to the football and the progression of the players.
“At any club you want a clear route for youngsters to come through. That starts with the 14s, 15s, and 16s – pushing them through to the academy and the chance to see them train daily and assess their strengths and weaknesses.
“I’ve trained with all the students now and I am really impressed with their attitude and application; they’ve got a hunger to progress and develop and there’s no better place to do that than here in front of the first team manager and coach.”
The club works in partnership with MidKent College to provide the two-year sports BTEC course. Lessons, matches and training all take place at the Gallagher Stadium, offering young people an attractive alternative after 11 years at a school.
Recruitment for September 2016 will begin soon – a date and time for an opening evening will be announced soon.