Pros heading back to College

YOUNG footballers at Dyke House Sports & Technology College will be receiving top tips from former Middlesbrough and Sunderland players for the third year in a row.

 

YOUNG footballers at Dyke House Sports & Technology College will be receiving top tips from former Middlesbrough and Sunderland players for the third year in a row.

Dyke House have linked up with the Back2Basics coaching team again after the excellent progress students have made under their watch already.

Former Sunderland players Gary Bennett, Kieron Brady and Julio Arca plus ex-Middlesbrough defender Dean Gordon will be regularly visiting the Hartlepool’s Dyke House to put on sessions with the College’s footballers.

The quartet have seen numbers attending sessions swell during their time working with Dyke House, while they play a key role in helping to develop footballers enrolled on the Elite Development Squad sports scholarship programme.

Bennett, the former Sunderland captain, said: “It was fantastic to see the progress made last year, when I believe Dyke House had six teams in Town Cup finals. Now, going into the third year, we are really looking forward to it.

“It seems there has also been progress in terms of behaviour, the understanding of the game and an increase in participation. We get a massive turnout now. If we turn up on a Wednesday there's 40 students and hopefully we will see that continue.”

Back2Basics make sure at least one of Bennett, Arca, Brady or Gordon lead the coaching sessions at Dyke House - and their commitment has not gone unnoticed at Dyke House.  

Danny Evans, the director of the Elite Development Squad, said: “It is no coincidence that the success our school teams have had is as good as we can remember. A big part of that is thanks to the three weekly sessions Back2Basics’ coaches offer us on an individual basis and for our teams.

“It resulted in six of the seven teams reaching Hartlepool Schools’ FA Cup finals earlier this year. We won four of those.

“To have ex-professionals, who played at such a high level, not only coaching but mentoring our young footballers is an unbelievable opportunity to continue to access.

“Hopefully the performances can benefit local grassroots football too. It is important as a school we work with our community partners.”

For further information on the Elite Development Squad sport scholarships at Dyke House contact devans@dykehouse.hartlepool.sch.uk

BY DYKE HOUSE REPORTER
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