FOOTBALL: THE SOLIHULL Moors Academy has seen ‘unprecedented success’ since its inception just one year ago and it will continue with its aim to develop and progress the most talented youngsters in the region.
Often young footballers are released prematurely by clubs within the higher echelons of the Football League and many tend to drop out of the system, opting for a career away from the sport.
But the Moors Academy has helped those players back onto the football ladder and has seen talents filter through its ranks either graduating into Liam McDonald’s first team in the National League or moving higher than ever before.
“I have been in this business since 1996 and I have not seen the growth we have seen here at the academy,” said academy manager Mark Fogarty. “It has been one year of unprecedented success.”
There are currently ten academy graduates that represent Moors’ top two squads, all of whom have crossed over from professional clubs across the Midlands.
Kieran Daws was released from Birmingham City before he joined The Moors Academy in hope of enhancing his ability as a footballer. After becoming one of the hottest prospects for the club, Blues re-signed the 16-year-old on a seven-month scholarship.
In similar circumstances, Marshall Willock was released from Walsall and move the Moors’ academy this year.
Since the he has grown into an impressive centre-half and the 16-year-old has since enjoyed trials at Birmingham City, Scunthorpe United and more recently Grimsby Town.
Pacey attacker Tyrese Shade was also released by Birmingham City before joining Moors and was offered a trial at Grimsby Town.
And defender Reece McNally, who is the youngest player currently in The Moors Academy, failed to make the grade at both Coventry City and Wolverhampton Wanderers before joining Moors this year.
But his solid performances has attracted the interest of Birmingham City and Grimsby Town, with the Birmingham-born starlet not turning 17 until August this year.
Academy manager Fogarty cannot take all of the credit. He is helped out by a team of dedicated staff which includes the likes of Sam Manoochehri, Anthony Hasker and former Aston Villa defender Richardo Scimeca.
Fogarty added: “We want to attract the best to clubs. Players are often let go too early, but with the quality of staff we have here, anything is possible.”