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Dons appoint Shaun North

15 July 2013

Experienced coach to coordinate development squad

as Under-21 Development Coach with his experience and passion for developing young players having made him the number one choice.Shaun NorthAFC Wimbledon have appointed

Shaun (pictured) has vast experience at both senior and youth level with his most recent post having been at League 2 Bristol Rovers as assistant first-team manager. Prior to that two-year spell with the Pirates, 53-year-old Shaun was assistant manager at Torquay United under Paul Buckle and he was also reserve team boss at Oxford United.

However, Shaun made his name by building a fine coaching reputation for himself at Portsmouth, where he helped to develop young players for 14 years at Pompey’s academy.

that Shaun was also required to demonstrate his coaching qualities on the training pitch before being offered the job – and he passed with flying colours.Dons Player told Mark RobinsonAFC Wimbledon Academy Manager

“We had a high volume of applications for this role and they were of a high standard too,” said Mark. “Although all of the seven candidates that we interviewed were good, Shaun stood out massively. Shaun gave a fantastic interview and he has a lot of experience, including being assistant manager at Bristol Rovers.

“Shaun also did the same job as me at Portsmouth Academy for 14 years, including when they were in the Premier League. His interview matched his credentials and when he also came down and took a coaching session it was clear that we should offer Shaun the job.

“Shaun came across as very humble; he had done a lot of research on the club and the most important thing is that he loves his football. Shaun has had experience of working at first-team level at clubs, but his passion is developing young footballers. I am sure that Neal Ardley and I will develop a good working relationship with Shaun.”

, the former Bristol Rovers manager, spoke in glowing terms about Shaun’s qualities after deciding to retain his services after Paul Buckle’s departure from the club.Mark McGhee

Mark said: “On the training ground Shaun is excellent; he is meticulous and has a brilliant work ethic. I was at home one night after a long day at the club and was watching Barcelona on television when Shaun phoned me up to tell me that he was on his way to watch Fulham versus Burnley in a youth game. That’s not something I told him to do, that’s just the type of guy he is.”

The main remit of Shaun’s post will be to provide young players with the individual and collective development required to help them make an impact at first-team level, therefore bridging the gap between 18 and 21 years of age.

Shaun, who is currently studying for his UEFA A Pro-Licence qualification, will coordinate a full programme of matches for the development team during 2013/14 (expected to be around 20 matches).

Dons Player subscribers can watch a full video interview with Mark Robinson later today, which includes more on Shaun’s appointment and an update on the Under-18s ahead of their pre-season tour this summer.

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