Andrew Warshaw on a new partnership between Enfield Town FC and a successful youth academy
Youth academies at the highest level of football may not have the clout they once did, given the influx of overseas imports, but for the majority of clubs they still provide the best platform for players to fulfil their dreams.
Now, in a hugely exciting move, Enfield Town has linked up with the nationally recognised EDSV programme. Standing for ‘Every Day Stand Victorious’, EDSV began life in 2012 with a mission to create an environment focused on performance, bridging the gap between grassroots and professional football and providing an ethos working on the person as well as the player.
The Hertfordshire-based programme was created by experienced player development coach Billy Highton and, with the help of a fully-qualified coaching team, has improved the technical skills of scores of both male and female players across the region, allowing them to train while remaining in full-time education.
Since its formation, EDSV has led the way in providing academic qualifications and football training to more than 500 students, boasting a raft of international and domestic successes including no fewer than 17 league titles. The academy gives opportunities for players in such competitions as the FA Youth Cup, Isthmian League, FA Women’s National League, as well as National College Football.
Now, from September, 2020, Enfield Town FC will partner with EDSV to provide both football and academic studies for male and female players aged from 16 to 19 years, in local and surrounding areas.
Billy said: “We are excited to form a partnership with such a huge club, after extensive discussions with chairman Paul Reed and his board around what we wanted to mutually gain from the academy programme, and I am delighted to be associated with the club.
“We have a vision to be the best, that means both academically and football-wise, and we will provide every opportunity for young players to fulfil their dreams.”
Enfield Town FC chairman Paul Reed says the partnership is exactly what the board have long been seeking to take the club forward. “A strong football and academic programme have been part of our aspirations for a long time now and I’m delighted that we’ve been able to partner with EDSV to deliver this,” said Paul.
“As a community club it’s essential that we provide sporting and educational opportunities to young people across the borough and beyond as we look to continue to grow all the sections of our club. I’m really excited about what this programme can deliver for both the scholars and the club and I’m certain that we’ll see plenty of success stories over the coming years.”