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Michael’s challenge to young prospects after Matt’s selection

Academy Manager wants more young Dons to show their appetite for success

12 November 2020

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Our 17-year-old goalkeeper Matt Cox has been recognised by the League Football Education after an impressive rise through the ranks.

The LFE selects Under-18 footballers from around the country for their outstanding efforts on and off the pitch. Recognition for ‘The 11’ acknowledges outstanding effort on and off the pitch, as well as assessing other factors, including involvement in community or charity-based initiatives.

Matthew, who was capped at England Under-17 level last season, signed his first professional contract here in May.

Our Academy Manager Michael Hamilton said: “This is in recognition for both on and off pitch achievements. Though Matt’s achievements on the field have been well documented, it’s the academic work and attitude that we as an academy want to highlight. When boys sign up to be a scholar here, it may be just the football that they want to focus on, but as management we do stress the importance of education.

“I’d like to take this time to acknowledge Stuart Page, our Head of Education here at the academy, as he does a lot of work behind the scenes on the academic progress of the boys. Rob Tuvey (Under-18s manager) and Jenna Richards (Academy Physical Performance and Medicine Manager) also deserve credit as they give the boys excellent education, both on and off the pitch. It’s also of no coincidence that the family behind Matt are very supportive, so well done to his parents Anna Lisa and Mark.

“With previous graduates acknowledged by the 11 including Jude Bellingham (Birmingham City, now Borussia Dortmund), Luke Matheson (Rochdale AFC, now Wolverhampton Wanderers) and Dominic Calvert-Lewin (formerly of Sheffield United), my message to Matt is ‘What’s next?’ My message to the rest of the academy is ‘Who is next?’

Visit the LFE website for more of an in-depth look at those selected.

‘The 11’ for November is as follows;

Warren Sung (Accrington Stanley)

Matthew Cox (AFC Wimbledon)

Charlie Wood (Bradford City)

Charlie Barker (Charlton Athletic)

Harrison Nee (Coventry City)

Alex Matthews (Derby County)

Liam Ravenhill (Doncaster Rovers)

Fraser Alexander (Ipswich Town)

Henry Popple (Middlesbrough)

Mason McLean (Queens Park Rangers)

Nigel Aris (Shrewsbury Town)

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