by Garry Clarke
DESPITE football taking a back seat during the current pandemic, plenty of work has been going on behind the scenes at Gorsey Lane as Rylands prepare for the future and return to action, when ever that maybe.
Speaking exclusively on the new Rylands Football Network youtube channel Chairman Mark Pye expressed the blues desire for creating a Rylands Football Academy.
Reflecting on the progress the club has made in the past three seasons he said “Three years ago we sat 11th in the Cheshire League, the following year we won the NWCFL First Division South and when the 2019/20 season was null and voided we were second in the Premier Division around some big clubs. It has been a massive achievement for Rylands and we are looking to continue that progression, but every other club is also looking to progress”.
“The first team management has done really well in recruiting players but looking at the bigger picture within the club we want to start home growing our own players by creating a pathway from the community sides through to semi-pro.”
“The community sides are the basic level for lads and girls to come in and learn the trade and get to know more about football. We want to give them the opportunity to take the next step if they want to progress further”.
“If we produce players that can make a living from the game and go way past Rylands we will have done our job”.
The Academy is seen as a vital growth area for the club, Pye continued “We have been discussing an Academy for two or three years now and started to put plans into place about six months ago”.
“With over 300 kids playing in our junior section our Community side is brilliant and we want to build up the number of ladies teams at the club and open up more teams at grass roots level. We want to give everyone, including managers and coaches, options to kick on with the opportunity to do it in house without having to go to another academy in the North West.”