Football academy players at Ellesmere College were recently treated to a footballing masterclass and coaching session by former Leicester City midfielder Richie Wellens.
Richie, 36, began his career at Manchester United before signing for Blackpool in 2000, and took the players through their paces with a selection of ‘phases of play’ game sessions.
Head of football, Nigel Keogh, said: “We feel as though it’s a great opportunity for the school and with Richie being an ex-professional player he will bring lots of experience.
“We will look to bring in guest coaches, provide different levels of expertise and give the lads a fresh field – not just one voice coaching them to benefit the programme.”
Richie shared his experiences of breaking into the professional game, having represented 10 clubs during his career.
He is now fascinated by the traits of Pep Guardiola, Jurgen Klopp and Jose Mourinho as he completes his coaching badges and develops his talents. He was working as a first-team coach at League One club Oldham Athletic when manager John Sheridan was sacked, and has taken over as interim boss. Oldham won their first match under his command, beating Peterborough 3-2.
Richie said: “I think for young players who have an education and try to be a footballer it’s important that you get the right sessions to keep interest levels up. It’s about getting the balance right.
“I like being out on the grass and I still enjoy training with the lads. I’d like to be where I’m at now for a couple of years and then a long term football league manager.
“When you’re a manager younger players are easier to show a pathway to and giving them a chance on the field gives trust, whereas older players have bigger agendas with bad habits.”
Richie (pictured) spent the afternoon delivering a Q and A followed by a coaching session where he showed off his expertise and the Ellesmere academy players put their skills to the test.
The football programme at Ellesmere College offers 14 hours of professional academy standard coaching each week, alongside subject-based qualifications including GCSEs, BTEC Diploma in Sport, A-Levels or the International Baccalaureate.
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