"Were excited to be strengthening our relationship with Leamington FC to deliver this new extension of the football academy."
A new higher national diploma in sport has been launched at Moreton Morrell College which will further support the development of young footballers at Leamington FC.
It will act as an extension of the Leamington FC Academy pathway, which is delivered in partnership with WCG (formerly Warwickshire College Group), which includes teams for men and women.
The Level 4 Higher National Certificate (HNC) will be available at Moreton Morrell College from September and will give students the opportunity to progress onto a Level 5 Higher National Diploma (HND).
The courses will act as the first and second year of a university degree and also provide a stream of talented footballers to play in the newly-formed Brakes reserve team.
Students will learn extensively about subjects such as nutrition, coaching, psychology and sports massage while still being given opportunities to progress their careers on the football pitch.
WCG is one of the few colleges in the country to work directly with a football club on an education scheme.
Students benefit from up to 10 hours of additional football a week and may get to play some of their fixtures at the club's 3,000-capacity Phillips 66 Community Stadium.
Students will also receive season tickets to Leamington Football Club and chances to train with the first team and attend scouting opportunities from Leamington Football Club.
Philippa Gerrard, Head of Department for Sport at WCG, said: “We’re excited to be strengthening our relationship with Leamington FC to deliver this new extension of the football academy.
“Students currently with the academy will be able to continue their studies at Moreton Morrell and compete in the new reserve team for Leamington at the same time.
“We are welcoming applications from any prospective students who have completed a Level 3 course too.
“However, the football option is not essential to study the course, and we will be considering students who wish to undertake the HNC in Sport and do so without the option of football.
“The courses will open up a range of future career paths for promising footballers, including progressing into physical education teaching and sports therapy.”
The courses are expected to attract talented players to Leamington FC from across Warwickshire who want to play football and stay in higher education.
Mark Fogarty, Football and Business Development Manager at Leamington FC, added: “Over the last few years the academy has gone from strength to strength and doubled its numbers.
“This has allowed the club to create a pathway for youngsters from the age of six all the way through to a very talented under-19 squad.
“This new provision will allow us to go one step further with a reserve/under-23 team – with players able to study for a higher education qualification simultaneously.
“Leamington is the highest ranked non-league club in Coventry and Warwickshire. We have a proven recent track record of helping promising young players back into the professional game and believe that this can provide a realistic path for talented players into our first team and beyond.”
Trials for the Leamington FC Academy are taking already taking place and any player interested in the course should contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07564 926231.
To find out more about the new HNC and HND Sport courses at WCG please visit www.wcg.ac.uk/study
PICTURE CAPTION: Players in the Leamington FC Academy