Men's Football Academy

Men's Football Academy

The Academy regularly produces top-class players and, more recently, there has been an increase in the number of players being called up for trial at Premier League clubs, while others are enjoying the experiences that come with studying in the USA on a football scholarship.

A strong commitment to coaching, competition and player welfare, matched with the Academy’s excellent facilities, has led to us recently being awarded Focus College Status by the Welsh Football Trust, for displaying best practice in player training and development. It’s a great place to meet new people and build life-long friendships.

Committed to your development
As a member of the Gower College Football Academy you will work with a team of highly trained and well-respected coaches.

A minimum of six hours of training a week is provided to Academy players, as well as access to elite sports training facilities at Swansea University Sports Village, which include high-quality grass and artificial pitches, an indoor sports hall, a national pool and classroom facilities where you will learn about sports psychology, tactics and nutrition.

Preparing a footballer for a professional career requires the input of many hours of physical, tactical and technical training – and this passion is what drives us. Our commitment to each student is to provide an Academy experience in an environment that is exciting, educational and stimulating.

Staying ahead of the competition
The Gower College Swansea Men’s Football Academy is a place where budding players learn the spirit of competition early on into their training.

The College competes in the highest level of college football available for U19 players, including: The ECFA Premier League; ECFA Regional League and Welsh Colleges competitions. Wednesday afternoon fixtures also include ECFA Cup, British Colleges Cup and WSFA Ivor Tuck Cup matches, as well as a Welsh Colleges 5-a-side competition.

Being part of the Football Academy’s development programme will allow you to continue to thrive in your academic studies and enjoy a high-level performance coaching and training experience that fits around you – it really is possible to have the best of both worlds. Here’s an example of a typical training week for an elite-level player at the Football Academy.

Monday: Strength and conditioning: using exercise prescription specifically to improve performance.                                                                                 Tuesday: Match preparation day: team shape, working within units, position specific work and understanding each team player’s roles and responsibilities during the match
Wednesday: Match fixtures
Thursday: Match recovery including swimming, yoga and pilates
Friday: Individual skills and techniques training, including specific training for goalkeepers

Focus on coaches

Richard South, Head of Football and ECFA Premier Squad Coach                                                                            
Bio: Richard joined the Academy in 2003, helping to merge Swansea and Gorseinon squads to create the Gower College Swansea Football Academy.
Experience: Worked for Swansea City AFC and Manchester United Soccer Schools for over ten years. Also coaches overseas in USA, Asia and Europe.

Andrew Stokes, ECFA Premier Squad Coach                                                                            
Bio: Ex Swansea College Sports student Andrew has been an integral part of the the academy since 2014, is currently undertaking the UEFA A Licence and is a Coach Educator for the Welsh FA.
Experience: worked for Swansea City, Swansea Schoolboys and Manchester United Soccer Schools. He has also coached abroad in USA, Asia, Africa & Europe.

Damian Davies, ECFA Regional Squad Coach                                                                          
Bio: Another ex-player who has come through our ranks, Damian joined the Academy in 2015 as Regional Coach, he is a UEFA C licence holder (GK and outfield) 
Experience: works as Development GK coach at Swansea City and Welsh Colleges Woman's. He has also coached at Swansea Schoolboys

Learning about leadership
Every student in the Academy has the opportunity to benefit from the College’s strong links with the FAW Trust, the Local Council and Swansea City Football in the Community who have created pathways for Academy players to qualify as football coaches.

Coaching skills will add to your knowledge of the sport and allow you to see aspects of the sport from a different perspective. Not only that, but coaching also helps to develop your interpersonal skills and take you around the world.

You can gain a Football Leader’s Award and even UEFA C Licence, which will stand you in great stead for the future. You’ll have the chance to practice your coaching skills while assisting with coaching the junior teams, working with younger players in the community and getting the experience of organising football events too.

To learn more about the Football Academy contact:
01792 284000
or follow our twitter page: @GCSFootball_

Updated January 2017