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Club News

Change of sporting code sets young talents on the way

Academy Manager Michael Hamilton's monthly round-up

22 September 2022

Club News

Change of sporting code sets young talents on the way

Academy Manager Michael Hamilton's monthly round-up

22 September 2022

Our Under-18s visited Surbiton Boxing Club recently – and they’ve certainly packed a punch at the start of this season!

As part of his monthly round-up, Academy Manager Michael Hamilton provided the latest on our young talents as he seeks to initiate the best possible opportunities for them to step-up to first-team football in the future.

Ringside with the Dons!

The Under 18s recently visited Surbiton Boxing Club, whose coaches delivered the same training session that they’d hosted for their own aspiring boxers.

The purpose of the visit was to take the boys out of their comfort zone and get them to control and manage their emotions. It was a great opportunity for them to adapt to a new environment, taking them away from their usual routines at the training ground.

Setting the tone

It’s always our target to start the season well – and not just in terms of results. More importantly, we set expectations for our programme, communicating our medium and short term objectives, and providing clarity to all. 

In the past month we’ve conducted our annual series of meetings and workshops – hosted by different members of our management team - including inductions for players, parents and staff.

Senior experiences

The start of this season has been pivotal in executing the plans for players transitioning into senior football - loan agreements having been confirmed for our first and second year professionals.

Ben Mason joined Basingstoke FC until January 2023, Marcel Campbell signed for South Park FC, and Ethan Sutcliffe started a loan spell with Salisbury FC.  Under 18 scholars Max Foulkes (Molesey) and Luka Ziger (Westside FC) have also been ‘loaned’ out on work experience agreements to senior sides.

Under 18s

After an opening day defeat to current league leaders Luton, the Under-18s have managed to win all of our games since, including coming back from two down in the Youth Alliance Cup versus Forest Green FC  - winning 4-2.

We currently sit third in the EFL Youth Alliance South East League table after four games with our results as follows:

Competition

Opposition

F

A

League

Luton Town FC

0

1

League

Stevenage FC

5

0

Cup

Forest Green

4

2

League

Sutton United FC

4

3

League

Southend United

5

0

In the second round of the Youth Alliance Cup our Under-18s have been drawn at home to Swindon Town FC.


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