Sheffield Wednesday: Kids can earn Owls chance

Wednesday’s training ground may be devoid of first-team players and staff at this time of year but it is alive with the sight and sound of dozens of youngsters.

Among them there just could be a professional of the future.

Sheffield Wednesday community manager Marcus Brameld

Sheffield Wednesday community manager Marcus Brameld

The players have been enjoying daily sessions put on by the Owls community programme.

Although they provide football fun and other sports during school holidays, supervised by qualified coaches, it is less well known that they also form part of the club’s scouting arm.

Players who show sufficient talent will be passed on for assessment by academy staff - and an academy scholarship is the first step on the ladder towards becoming a pro..

“The more kids we get through the system, the more chance we have of getting some who could be signed to the academy and ultimately to the first team,” says Owls community manager Marcus Brameld.

Former Wednesday midfield player Luke Boden is an example of someone who was spotted at a camp and went on to have a pro career, with Wednesday and Orlando City.

The Spring Bank holiday camp ends today but more will be held in the summer, at Middlewood, Worksop, Retford, Dore and the East Coast holiday resort of Ingoldmells.

The camps are open to boys and girls aged from five to 14; others have been held this week at Dore and Retford. The community programme has also offered other activites such as dance, martial arts and athletics.

“We have 19 qualified coaches working for the programme and it’s safe, fun environment,” added Marcus.