Club Partner Cedar Court plays host
Hundreds of young footballers and their parents descended on the Cedar Court Hotel in Huddersfield on Wednesday night for the Huddersfield Town Academy Open Evening.
Academy Manager Mark Lillis hosted the evening in the packed function room at Town’s Club Partner and gave the budding Academy players – ranging from the under-9 to under-18 teams – an idea of what they need to do to become professional footballers.
Mark showed a video documenting the journey from joining the Academy to the senior setup, citing Jack Hunt and Alex Smithies and the roles they played in the Club’s Play-Off Final at Wembley back in May as an example of the rewards on offer.
Academy graduates Jack and Alex also gave their advice to Town’s youngsters as part of the video.
Town’s Head of Football Operations Ross Wilson then took centre stage and addressed the parents, giving them an idea of the scale of investment the Club is putting into the Academy – with the aim of making it the best Academy in Yorkshire and eventually the north.
Lillis then introduced the staff who will take each age group in the Academy this season before Keri Kayes from nutritional company CNP Professional took to the stage and gave the players ideas on how they can stay in shape thanks to the decisions they make off the field.
Representatives from Pro Soccer Support then explained how parents can track the progression of their kids via a new online portal, which includes information about useful exercises among other things.
Finally, Education and Welfare Officer Karen Crosland from the Academy gave the kids a flavour of what to expect in terms of their off the field work.
Huddersfield Town Academy Manager Mark Lillis commented:
“This is the first time I’ve had the chance to get all the parents together in one room since my arrival as Academy Manager and it was great to do so. I think it’s important that we get the entire family together and give them an idea of what their kids will be doing at the Academy, as well as what the Academy’s aims are moving forward.
“The most important people at the Academy are the players and it is vital that our staff build a good rapport with their age groups, so this was also an ideal opportunity to get everyone together and introduce the 17 full-time staff.
“I’d like to thank everyone for taking the time to come to the evening.”