New DAFC Youth Academy moves forwardFriday, 26th Nov 2021
Dunfermline Athletic is absolutely delighted to announce that its new Youth Academy will commence activities in January 2022.
Approval for the club’s Academy to participate in the SFA Club Academy Scotland (“CAS”) programme for 2022 was given at the recent SFA Licencing Committee meeting. Bids from clubs to participate in the programme was for 1 year only, as the CAS programme will be revamped by the SFA in the coming weeks, for 2023 through to 2025. Dunfermline Athletic are fully committed to participation in the programme beyond 2022.
Dunfermline’s application, like all other Academies who are currently participating in the CAS programme was subject to a rigorous audit by SFA staff. Our application to participate in the Performance Tier met all the criteria set out by the SFA in each of the relevant categories being audited. 10 clubs from both the Premiership and Championship will have Academies participating in the Performance Tier. The categories audited included:
- Coaching Staff qualifications;
- Training facilities;
- Match day facilities;
- Talent Identification;
- Tactical and Technical Plans;
- Player education programme;
- Child Wellbeing and Protection;
- Academy Development planning;
- Sports Science provision;
- Medical support; and
- Match analysis.
Whilst the criteria have been met for these categories without access to our new training centre at Rosyth being operational, it is with great excitement that we anticipate as to how access to our new centre at Rosyth will enhance the programme for our Academy players and coaching staff.
The SFA Club Academy Scotland programme runs by calendar year and does not follow the senior football season of August – May. Our Academy coaching activities will begin early January and the games programme for the teams will commence early February. In total, the Academy will run 7 teams. These are; Under 11/12/13/14/15/16 and a dual age band U17/18s. Matches will take place on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday. U17/18s will play on a Friday night. U11s, U13s and u15s will play on a Saturday and U12s, U14s and U16s will play on a Sunday. Until the training ground at Rosyth becomes operational home matches for the U17/18s will take place at the new 3g at South Queensferry High School. Home matches for all other teams will be at Michael Woods Sports Centre in Glenrothes. We thank all of the coaching staff, players and parents in advance for their patience and understanding.
DAFC Club Chairman, Ross McArthur stated “As DAFC moves away from the Fife Elite Football Academy to set up its own Academy, it is important that the club recognises the role FEFA played over the last 7 years in allowing Dunfermline Athletic to have the opportunity to continue to develop young footballers. The fruits of that can be seen in the presence of Matty Todd, Lewis McCann, Paul Allan and Millar Fenton in the current 1st team squad. The coaches at FEFA who helped develop those players have committed to being part of the new Dunfermline Athletic Academy, which is terrific. I would like to pay tribute to both Bill Hendry and Matt Lawson who have worked tirelessly over the last few weeks to ensure our application to the SFA was dealt with professionally and diligently. In addition, they have also ensured that all of the players, parents and coaches have been kept up to date. Finally, I would also like to personally thank fellow director, Kip McBay who has been our club representative on the FEFA Board for the last few years, and has also worked tirelessly behind the scenes.
Bringing back our own Youth Academy is another significant milestone in rebuilding our club for the future, and provides a joined up pathway for young footballers from the Pars Foundation, to the Academy and then ultimately the first team.”
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