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Dons link-up with Town

12 September 2014

Academy widens its talent search

The AFC Wimbledon Academy has extended its search for young footballing talent by announcing a partnership with Basingstoke Town FC.

It’s a link-up that widens Wimbledon’s scouting network as talented players from Basingstoke Town’s academy will be offered a pathway to develop with the Dons. On the other hand, players leaving the AFC Wimbledon academy may be offered opportunities at Basingstoke Town.

The Hampshire club are currently in Conference South and its academy teams play in the highly regarded Nerf Junior Premier League.

AFC Wimbledon Academy Manager Jeremy Sauer said: “In the last 12 months we have put quite a lot of effort into developing our scouting and new talent recruitment network. This will extend our network even further. It’s mutually beneficial for both clubs and hopefully we can have a long-standing relationship.”

In addition, the partnership will mean regular matches between the AFC Wimbledon Academy and Basingstoke with the Dons providing its professional coaching expertise.

Head of Talent ID at AFC Wimbledon, Karl Sharman, has worked hard to develop the club’s scouting network and he’s delighted with this latest development.

“I am very pleased to start this partnership with Basingstoke Town, and I hope we can help each other build for the future. I have witnessed Basingstoke Town play through all ages and have been impressed with their coaching and playing ability.

Basingstoke Town has a great reputation in Hampshire and nearby counties. We hope we can benefit from this and give players the chance to be professional footballers.” “We are always forward-thinking at AFC Wimbledon, and we are looking to enhance what we do. This will be another step in the right direction. We hope this relationship will help both clubs progress players through to the first-team.

Head of Coaching at Basingstoke Town, Adam Clark, said: “The partnership with AFC Wimbledon was an offer too good to turn down. We have seen first-hand the professionalism and set-up at the AFC Wimbledon Academy. Their mantra of ‘Home-grown and hungry’ echoes the ethos we are looking to promote at our club. This will offer great opportunities for our players to learn by playing with top young players.”

The picture above shows Dons Academy Under-9 coach Joe Roberts providing tactical tips for young footballers.

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