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Post Info TOPIC: Youth Set Up

troll catcher

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Posts: 11491
Youth Set Up

Very poor this season, no sign of improvement, After the reserves last season we need someone to sort it out clearly. As we revealed Barry Jeffrey would be a great start in sorting things. He sorted Tonbridge Angels youth set up and has contacts to bring in decent players. Frankly on results the Reserves we had and the 2 youth teams we have now are nowhere near good enough as a whole. Barry will have a further meeting with Graham Hobbins in November. Hopefully this will be the start of improving the youth/reserves at PVR. At least they realise that at the moment it is not good enough.


Alexander O'Neal 1987 "I'm fed up cos all you wanna do is criticize "









First X1 Player

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Posts: 112
RE: Youth Set Up

With regard to the youth set up etc, my son plays junior football (Under 7's) and his team has played against Erith & Belvedere, Cray Wanderers, etc but it does not appear that Welling United have any sort of football at that level.

I am not saying that the club have to be fully involved but surely that should have junior teams playing in their name/kit etc if for nothing else to get the name of the club further into junior football, schools etc. I can't believe E&B plough loads of money into the kids football but from what I have seen they have one of the best setups and some of the best kids at U7/U8/U9. These kids I am sure will then ask there dads to take them to see E&B play ona saturday and then that's another dozen people throught he gate that maybe hooked for many years to come.

It just seems that the club focus solely on the first team and nothing else



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Posts: 4158
RE: Youth Set Up

We developed along a recognised path from junior football to our current status as a Conference South outfit.  Along the way we have seen the ideal situation of a first team supported by a reserve team who in turn are supported by a youth set up.  For whatever reason (and its immaterial beyond, if possible, avoiding it happening again) that ideal was eroded leaving us today with two ‘rebadged’ youth sides, which are not promoted by the Club, and a first team.  The determining factor for the way forward for me is what offers the most support to the first team.


At the risk of being branded a heretic I would suggest that we forget about youth teams for the moment and focus all of our energies and resources on establishing a reserve side in the Capital League.    


The Clubs most critical need is the provision of a route back to match fitness following injury, which can only be achieved via a reserve side or loaning players out.  A reserve side would also serve to provide the ideal bridge between youth football and senior non league football/league football for those blessed with genuine potential and the necessary commitment and attitude to last the course.   Only when we have an established reserve team set up do I believe that we can afford to turn our attention to the youth setup.


Once we do turn our attention to youth sides I am firmly of the view that the way forward in this is to re-establish a Youth Development Officer, to actively recruit players to whatever sides are created (not simply take over and rename an existing team - half hearted tokenism in my view) and to ensure that they are recognised as, and treated as, part of the Club from the outset. 


What about a PASE side I hear you say, well I’m not a believer in non league sponsored PASE sides.  My view is that the vast majority of non league sides, Welling included, would go belly up if they took up residence in the League.  In those circumstances their pinnacle of achievement is being regarded as a great local football club and the maintenance of that view of the Club is in my opinion best served by being represented at all levels in the locality.  PASE, again in my opinion, is an elite sports based venture and as such may serve to boost the egos of a few at Club level but has very little to do with the local community.  Junior/youth football sides, genuinely attached to a Club such as Welling, are very much about the local community and are the seeds which become grassroots football.


YOUTH are the future


"The worst thing you can do is make a committment and not meet it and I understand that."  Barrie Hobbins 14 August 2010


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