Official launch of SJB Academy takes place
The official launch of the SJ.B (St Joseph’s/Bray) Academy took place in the Academy Grounds in Carrickmines on Tuesday evening.
The official opening was attended by over 100 members and distinguished guests including FAI CEO John Delaney, High Performance Director Ruud Dokter, Republic of Ireland U16 Head Coach Paul Osam, as well as Minister of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Mary Mitchell-O'Connor, TD.
SJB Academy Director Niall O’Driscoll addressed the assembled crowd by saying, "The vision of SJB Academy is firstly identifying, recruiting, developing & retaining well rounded players with the ability to play professional football with Bray Wanderers under the guidance of highly motivated, highly qualified coaches. Also, ensuring that participation in the Academy will ‘Create Value for Our Players Futures’ beyond the duration of their time in the Academy in terms of Education and Employment,” he said.
“Through the Elite Development Programme we want to attract the best young players and support them in all aspects of a player’s technical, tactical, athletic, educational and social development. Our ultimate objective is to develop well rounded, highly educated, talented young footballers that progress up the development ladder.”
St Joseph's/Bray Under 17 SSE Airtricity League manager Will Clarke said that “the Academy is a pathway from 5-year olds to the Bray first team. The aim is to become the best academy in the country over the next few years”.
FAI CEO John Delaney commented upon the opening, “I want to congratulate both St Joseph’s Boys and Bray Wanderers. It is a credit to their commitment to underage football that they have established the first dedicated underage football academy following FAI guidelines."
“This dedicated academy is something that both St Joseph’s and Bray Wanderers can be proud of, and is something that we in turn at the FAI can point to when it comes to developing similar facilities around the country, as an example of what can be achieved," he added.
FAI High Performance Director Rudd Dokter added, “this is a clear path way for the growth of underage football."