Manchester United start 'unique' Academy Alumni Programme

Academy Director Nick Cox speaking to United's Academy Alumni

Academy Director Nick Cox speaking to United's Academy Alumni

Manchester United have formally launched their new Academy Alumni Programme, with more than 40 former players invited to watch the Under-21s game at Old Trafford and celebrate the initiative.

United say the Programme is “unique in English football” and formalises support for their former players. The idea is for former players to remain actively engaged with the Academy and receive formal access to support, help and advice.

A range of events will be held, offering access to informal education and workshops on personal development and life skills, further education and qualifications. There will also be support in finding new playing and post-playing career opportunities, plus wellbeing support.

The Programme will initially be open to an alumni group of about 225 former players who have left United since 2012 and were either registered after the age of 15 or with the Academy for five or more years.

United say the provisions “far exceed the governing bodies’ minimum requirements” and that the Academy will hold itself to "the highest possible standard of support for those exiting its system.”

Academy Director Nick Cox said “I am extremely proud of our aftercare programme, we put a huge amount of focus on ensuring that we are able to continue to support young people long after they leave the Academy.

“We have always kept excellent relationships with everyone who has been part of our system; the Alumni initiative is designed to formalise our network to ensure that no player misses out on the incredible opportunities that come from being associated with Manchester United.”

To watch Nick Cox in TGG's Youth Development Webinar, click the button below. There are five presentations:

  • Nick Cox Q&A: Youth Development the Man Utd Way.
  • Michael Hamilton: The Self-Management Model at AFC Wimbledon.
  • Per Mertesacker Q&A: Creating Strong Young Gunners.
  • Gregg Broughton: How to Measure the Success of an Academy.
  • Ged Roddy MBE: A Decade of EPPP.

Last November, the Academy hosted a pilot event for the Programme, with several former players returning to Carrington to participate in a training camp focusing on coaching and physical preparation. They also engaged in a series of workshops about the opportunities available once they finish playing.

United's U21s lost Friday's game against Liverpool 3-0. However, their U18s won the U18 Premier League North division title with two matches remaining by beating Wolves 2-1 on Tuesday.

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