Town’s new-look Academy brokers knowledge-share agreement with ambitious non-league club
- Town Academy forming a new relationship with Southport FC
- CEO of Academy Title Partner PURE Business Group, Phil Hodgkinson, is a Director at Southport
- Knowledge transfer between the two clubs is the initial focus
The Huddersfield Town Academy has formed a new working relationship with Vanarama National League North Southport FC.
The clubs have come together over the last few months to exchange ideas on best practise and to discuss how the development of Town’s promising young players could potentially work in tandem moving forward.
Huddersfield Town fan Phil Hodgkinson is the link between the Town Academy and The Sandgrounders. Phil is Chief Executive Officer of the Academy’s new Title Partner PURE Business Group, whose logo appears on the kits of every Academy age group this season, and is also a Director at the highly ambitious non-league club.
To begin the knowledge transfer process between the Terriers and Southport FC, a delegation led by Southport Chief Executive Natalie Atkinson recently visited the John Smith’s Stadium to meet with their Town counterparts to learn about Premier League operations and take lessons back to their Club.
That process will continue, whilst Southport’s football staff will meet regularly with Town Academy Manager Leigh Bromby to discuss best practise and the potential for Town’s promising young talents to move to the Merseyrail Community Stadium to experience senior men’s football.
Huddersfield Town’s Commercial Director Sean Jarvis (left), Academy Manager Leigh Bromby and Senior Commercial Manager Tracy Nelson are pictured above with Phil Hodgkinson, Director at Southport FC.
Town’s Academy Manager Leigh Bromby explained:
“We’ve made no secret of how important we feel giving our young players experience of competitive, men’s senior football is to their development as footballers. As such, it is fantastic to have this close relationship with Southport FC to explore the possibility.
“It has to be right for the individual player, just as it would have to be right for Southport too; they are very ambitious and the player would need to be able to thrive at Vanarama National League North level for them. Again, it’s great to have that trust and open dialogue to see if we can help each other to achieve our ambitions.
“In the meantime, we will speak regularly with the staff at Southport to try and share some best practise to everyone’s benefit.”
Town’s Commercial Director Sean Jarvis added:
“I would like to thank Phil Hodgkinson and the team at PURE Business Group for the continued support of the Club. Following on from their recent main shirt sponsorship, we’re proud to carry the logo of the company on the shirts of our Academy teams this season and beyond.
“This new relationship with Phil’s club Southport FC can be really fruitful for everyone. On top of the potential benefits to the Academy and Southport that Leigh mentions, we’re delighted to be able to show Natalie and her team how we do things at Huddersfield Town on the commercial and operational side too.
“I recognise many synergies with Southport to our beginnings of the ‘New Era’ under Dean Hoyle. Yes, we were higher in the football pyramid at the time, but the willingness to learn, improve and innovate is just the same. I really hope we can help Southport on their own journey.”
Southport Director and CEO of PURE Business Group Phil Hodgkinson commented:
“I am delighted that Huddersfield Town has agreed to this new relationship, particularly being a lifelong supporter.
“We have huge ambition at Southport FC and to be able to share the knowledge of a Premier League club like Huddersfield Town in all areas with their incredible staff will help to accelerate our own journey up the football pyramid.
“The opportunity for us to work with Leigh Bromby and hopefully develop a relationship and reputation of being able to give Huddersfield’s promising young talent experience of Men’s football in a full-time environment, and assist with their career development, will be of huge benefit to both clubs.
“I am incredibly proud to have been able to put together with Sean, Leigh and the team what I believe is a ‘non-league first’ and to be able to do this with a Premier League club of Huddersfield Town’s stature demonstrates both our ambition for Southport FC, but also Town’s belief and trust, in our ambition and methods.”