Sheffield United: Youth boss thrilled for Willis

Sheffield United

Sheffield United

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NICK Cox, Sheffield United’s academy manager, has expressed his joy at George Willis being nominated in the Apprentice of the Year category for League One in the 2013 Football League Awards.

The Rotherham-born goalkeeper, who has previously represented England in the Victory Shield, has yet to make a senior appearance for United. Willis has regularly featured in the under-18s and under-21s set up this season.

Prior to Danny Coyne’s arrival at Bramall Lane, Willis provided back-up to first-choice shot-stopper George Long, with manager Danny Wilson naming the highly regarded youngster on the substitutes bench several times. Willis joined the Blades academy system at the age of nine.

Cox said: “We are delighted to hear that George has been shortlisted. It is yet another timely reminder of the opportunities that are being created for young players at Sheffield United.”

United are among 24 clubs who have made the shortlists for the eight categories. There are 17 awards up for grabs and the annual awards ceremony will take place at the gala ceremony at The Brewery, London on Sunday March 24.

A judges panel comprising of media, sports industry figures and representatives of The Football League, drew up the shortlist last week.