Everton Academy Chief Operating Officer Waldron exits after 12 years

Joel Waldron: Joined Everton full-time in September 2011

Joel Waldron: Joined Everton full-time in September 2011

JOEL WALDRON, Everton’s Academy Chief Operating Officer and former Academy Director, has left the club after 12 years.

Waldron, the son of former Everton Head of Academy Recruitment Martin Waldron, first joined the Toffees as a casual scout before being appointed Head of Academy Operations in September 2011.

In March 2017, he was promoted to Academy Director and held the role for three-and-a-half years, until he was replaced by David Unsworth. Then Waldron moved onto the new role of Academy Chief Operating Officer and also took on responsibilities as Head of Academy Recruitment.

Everton’s Category One Academy has undergone major changes since the appointment of Kevin Thelwell as Sporting Director in March 2022. (Thelwell appeared on Episode #58 of the TGG Podcast, which you can watch below).

Gareth Prosser has come in as Academy Manager, Carl Darlington as Head of Coaching and Lee Sargeson as Manager of Scouting Operations. Dan Manning has been Head of Academy Operations since July 2019.

Writing on LinkedIn, Waldron said: “After over 12 years full-time at Everton Football Club – and many more years of association – I have recently moved on. I greatly appreciate the opportunities I had during my time at the club, taking me from a young casual scout and administrator, through to roles such as Head of Academy Recruitment, Chief Operating Officer and Academy Director. It has been my privilege and something I will always be proud of.

“On a personal level I enjoyed many amazing experiences and great times, overcame some challenging ones, learned a lot, and hopefully positively impacted others, the programme and the culture along the way too. Above all, I was fortunate to get to know and work with countless outstanding children, families and colleagues, including those across the wider game.

“As someone passionate about the potential of youth development, both on and off the pitch, I could not have asked for much more, particularly at the club my family has supported for generations. I would sincerely like to thank everyone connected with Everton, present and past, for their support over the years and wish everyone there nothing but the best of luck for the future.

“I now look forward to spending some quality time with my wife and daughter, family and friends as we head into Christmas and the New Year – taking the time to relax, reflect and recharge – before seeing what 2024 brings.”

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