Great news for youngsters

Last updated : 11 February 2003 By Tony Scholes

The club have been able to reveal today that four members of our Centre of Excellence Under 14s have been called up to an England National Development Course that will be run at Lilleshall during the next school holidays.

The four boys in question are Stephen Hall, Jack Overson (now that surname sounds familiar), Jay Rodrigues and Chris Smalley. They will be receiving some top coaching during that period, one of the coaches being an ex-Claret in goalkeeper Tony Parks.

Four being selected may not sound too significant when you know that they will be just four of around 200 boys in total but don’t be fooled because most of those will be coming from Premiership clubs and Nationwide League clubs with academies.

Outside of that only eight of around sixty centres of excellence have boys selected to attend and only the academies from Arsenal and Sunderland can match our allocation of four.

This really is a boost and a real feather in the cap for each of the boys and Clarets Mad would like to send congratulations to them all. Not just that but our congratulations also go to those responsible at our Centre of Excellence for their good work in helping them to reach this level.

Hopefully one day soon we will be a club that once again can produce first team players from home grown talent and today’s news coupled with the impressive showing from some of the younger lads in the Youth Cup game last week can only help.