Academy Manager, Chris Ganner, discussed the return to training for his youngsters as they aim to impress and build a pathway towards Jim Bentley’s first team.
Following the announcement of Sheldon Green’s new deal with the club and Chairman, David Haythornthwaite’s comments that he wants to see the younger generation of the Fylde Coast in the club’s first team, it is now more important than ever for the Coasters to ensure that the academy is performing to the best of its ability.
The addition of Conrad Prendergast as Head of Academy Coaching, who joined full-time from Fylde Women FC, means that the quality of coaching within the set-up has increased.
Speaking to afcfylde.co.uk, Ganner told us: “I am really, really excited for the season ahead and for what is to come at the club. There is a real determination to create a pathway for our younger lads to see what they’re working for and to understand that they can make the first team if they work hard enough.
“We are creating strategies and coming together with both Jonty Castle [AFC Fylde Chief Executive] and Jim Bentley [AFC Fylde Manager] to make sure that we are all in touch regularly, working towards developing players, helping with education and creating good people that can thrive in a positive environment.”
Ganner continued: “The academy and the first team will be using the same building from this season. That’s a huge thing for us, as our players can see the team that they want to be part of. They can see the standards set, the way in which they are working and it makes them want to be part of it. Having that drive and ambition will be key for us, we want that.
“We’ve had some great discussions with Jim and his new assistant Nick Chadwick, which has been really positive. Nick has been heavily involved over the last few years in the academy at Wigan so he knows the value that we can bring, and they’ve told us their plans for how they see our lads fitting into their squad for next season and the opportunities they will give for players to progress.
“In the tough climate we’re living through, we are able to bring this positive news about an academy that will be looking to progress as much as it can over the coming years, creating a positive environment for hard-working young individuals across the region. Now we can’t wait to get going!”