AFC Rushden & Diamonds Academy Update

AFC Rushden & Diamonds has Academy sides at most age levels, as shown in the diagram below, and is fielding teams in several Junior Premier League age groups.

Each of the coaches of the various sides will provide updates on progress during the season.

U12 – Coach Scott Carlin

This is a new team for this season which Scott and his assistant, Ryan Farmer, have been working on for the past 12 months. They play in the Under 12 Junior Premier League. The pleasing thing is 5 lads have stepped up from the development squad with the rest being handpicked from the Northamptonshire area. They have started the season in a positive fashion beating local rivals Kettering town 11-1 in a friendly, before beating Histon 5-0 & drawing 2-2 with an Arsenal Soccer School from Oxford in the JPL cup.

U13 – Coach Andy Peaks

After the success of last season in the JPL League and Cup our current U13s have this season had to make the transition to 11-a-side football and larger goals. They play in the Under 13 Junior Premier League. Some extra players have been added to the squad and they have currently won two of their first three games, albeit without a couple of their stronger players who are currently out injured. Andy is confident they will be very competitive and is looking forward to helping the boys develop over the season.

 U14 – Coach Martin Jenkins

The U14 have been working hard through the summer. Each member of the squad was given a fitness program to follow in preparation for the new season. They play in the Under 14 Junior Premier League. The boys have been taking more responsibility and have been training at a greater intensity both physically and mentally. We have been working on making play predictable and different styles of play over the summer. The boys are starting to transfer their knowledge into games and developing their overall knowledge base. We have made a positive start to our JPL season and the team is really starting to gel and transferring what they have been working on in training to the games.

U15 – Coach Ray Wilson

The u15s squad is largely the same as last season. They play in the Under 15 Junior Premier League. The team have had some good additions such experienced Patrick Casey and Josh Yard. The new coach Ray Wilson has come with his own ideas and is taking his time getting to know his team. Ray has expressed a preference for the squad to be as expressive as possible when playing the game, and to expect occasional mistakes. Their style of play is winnings them plaudits from various quarters so far this season. The club looks forward to seeing how this group develop over the coming months.

U16 – Dan Wheller

The under 16s have made a positive start to the season, after a hardworking and constructive pre-season. The squad took part in two pre-season friendlies against Brixworth U18s and Kettering Town. They play in the Under 16 Junior Premier League. There are lots of familiar faces in the squad from last season, alongside some new additions, which makes for a very talented age group. The squad will again compete in the JPL this season, and have already made a good start with strong performances against Coventry and St. Neots.

There are also Diamonds Development Centre sides from U9 to U13 levels who play ad hoc matches.

The overall club structure is illustrated in the following diagram, which is also available in PDF format with clickable links to the various league / fixture lists – Whole_Club_Football_Structure1516 v3

AFC Rushden & Diamonds

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