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Academy completes Category 2 audit

15 March 2013

Sky Blues Academy now await decision on category status following EPPP audit

Coventry City Academy boss Gregor Rioch says his team could not have done more as the club's youth set-up goes in search of an official Category 2 qualification.

Rioch and the Academy's staff and players have been working hard for the last 12 months, piecing together a 1,000-page document outlining the set-up's practices and infrastructure in order to achieve Category 2 status.

Achievement of the new status, under the outlines of the Elite Player Performance Plan, would help further develop the club's chances of attracting the next crop of young talent as well as continuing to provide a high quality level of coaching to players currently under their charge.

A decision, following a recent audit by the EPPP, is expected in the next few weeks and Rioch said he was confident the club had ticked all the relevant boxes.

"The audit went well and we have obviously reviewed and evaluated the evidence we have provided," Rioch said.

"While we cannot get too carried away we believe that we have provided all of the criteria the EPPP are looking for when awarding an Academy category 2 status.

"We answered all of the questions and provided relevant examples of the criteria we need to meet from the club's football philosophy, the quality of coaching to deliver that philosophy and the education of players away from the pitch to help them become better professionals.

"Academies are now very much like teaching environments and the EPPP places huge importance of the development of players both on and off the pitch and everything they asked for during this audit we feel confident we have produced."

Sky Blues development director Steve Waggott added that the Academy's history of producing young players justified the push for Category 2 which he said would make a career with Coventry City an attractive starting point for young players and their parents.

He said: "You have to make sure your category is as high as possible to attract young players while at the same time making sure their parents are comfortable that their children are being put on the right pathway in terms of their development as people as well players.

"As highlighted during the development of the EPPP, it's basically all about creating an environment where a local talent, developed in his local club can go on to play for the first team."

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