The Academy of Football Australia have had a very successful 2015 Season. The year started with the whole organisation switching camps from Coomera to Nerang FC. Our alliance with NFC has been brilliant, with Bob Jeffrey the President of Nerang throwing his full support behind AFA. This stable, supportive platform is one of the major contributors to the Academies success this year!
Playing under AFA Nerang banner saw the 13's and 14's win the League and Championship double in the Gold Coast JPL. This shows growth from 2014, with 13's (12's then) being runners up in that year, now to winners, and it is noteworthy that 3 of the younger squad are playing a year up.
"Why the success?"
At the end of 2014 the Academy made a conscious decision to increase the training from 3 to 4 nights a week, and to play 40 + games a year. The major motivation for this increase in player work load was to bring the Academy inline with overseas Academies, which we have done to great effect.
Another high point in the year was the 14's + 2x 13's were taken to the UK to compete in the Youdan Trophy. AFA understands that you must test yourself against the best, and that we did! The boys played 8 games in 12 days which is a mammoth task, and never were overrun or out played, all the training the Lads had done held them in good stead. Upon leaving Sheffield, we left behind some new friends and new admirers.
On the Coaching front, the Academy bought in Blake Thompson (ex Birmingham City Academy Player) Tom McNiesh ( Strength and Conditioning ) and Brad Hill. Brad bought in a wealth of Football Insight to the programme. His academic approach has been a real bonus to the Academy, he insists you must measure. Brad Coached the 14's with great success.
Apart from Football, the Academy realises it has a duty to its community. This year the Committee put together a number of Football packs to be distributed by DOCS to some of its sports minded little angels. We understand we can't save the world, but we can spread some happiness.
Lastly the Academy Committee are unsung hero's, they have worked so hard to make the Academy a more professional streamlined outfit and without them this story could not have been told.
GARY SCOTT, DOI