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League Express



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The new Featherstone Rovers Head coach is..............

15 May 2014 - 08:07 PM

Andy Hay.

2015 Academies & Player Development Centres

15 May 2014 - 07:15 AM

I recently received the information below and it makes very interesting reading




A three tier Academy structure will be developed with 4 year Licenses 

Up to 8 Category 1 Full-Time Academies. 
Up to 8 Category 2 Part-Time Academies 
Unlimited Category 3 Education Academies 

The Academy structure will require clubs to identify a strategic approach for how the club want to develop players within the resources that it has available. 

Academy U15 and U16

Category 1 Academy will operate and manage the full coaching and games programme for up to 40 players registered as scholars in an U15-U16 Academy. Players will progress from the community club environment to the professional club and be dual registered with the community club. Only Category 1 clubs will be able to operate professional club registered scholars. A Category 1 Academy will operate at two age groups U15 and 16 and support a minimum of 4 Player Development Centres at U12-U16 to underpin the system and support the development of community environments. 

Category 2 Academy will operate a U16 Foundation Academy and manage a player’s programme of coaching and games through the introduction of a Playing Tariff, for players identified at U16. Each player will be retained within the with community environment. The professional club will support the community club coaches through establishing a Player Development Centre at U15 and U16. 

The Foundation Academy and will be able to access up to 20 players for a programme of development and games within an agreed window outside the community playing season. Players will remain registered with the community club with up-to 5 players per club registered with the professional club and managed through the Player Tariff. 

A Category 2 Academy will be required to operate and support a minimum of 4 Player Development Centres at U12-U16. 

Category 3 Academy will operate in partnership with an education institute (FE College, school, Specialist Sports College, private school) where the players are registered in the community environment. Category 3 will not have scholars registered and will be required to establish Player Development Centres with community clubs and schools. 

Academy U19 

Category 1 Academy will recruit up to 30 professional players into the Academy. The Academy programme will be required to operate a minimum a minimum 30 hours with players registered on supporting education programmes. (AASE will be the minimum standard of provision. Or alternative models with appropriate A levels and BTEC provision provide a structure curriculum) Players must receive Minimum Contract Value. 

Category 2 Academy will be able to recruit up to 25 professional players into the Academy. The Academy programme will be required to operate part-time over a minimum of 15 hours. Players must receive Minimum Contract value and will be in education training or work. 

Category 3 Academy will recruit up to 25 players in partnership with the education partner. A structured curriculum must be provided to support the development of the player. As a late development model, Category 3 Academy should aspire to providing a high quality environment with a minimum of 10-15 hours or contact time. 


Community Clubs and Schools can be accredited as a Player Development Centre (PDC). 

The accreditation process is open for any club to aspire to meet the standard or can be accredited through a partnership with a professional club. 

Player Development Centres will provide high quality coaching, and deliver a curriculum that supports the development of the player that is appropriate to the age and stage of development of the players. 

All players will be profiled and monitored to ensure that each player reaches their full potential. 

The Player Development Centre will replace the Service Area programme for talent identification and development. 

The aims are to address the relative age effect, retain more players, and identify those players ready to progress into the talent development environments.

A critical objective is that the PDC does not remove the player from their current playing and development environment but seeks to improve the coaching and playing programme within the community clubs and schools. 

Player Development Centres are initial part of the Rugby League performance pathway to help raise coaching and playing standards nationally for players in the U12s to U16s age groups. 

The PDC will provide a high quality performance coaching programme aimed at improving technical and tactical knowledge, core skills and strength and conditioning. 

Player Development Centres will be the mechanism through which professional clubs can identify, profile and develop potentially talented players for entry into the Academy environments whilst supporting the development and retention of players in the community environment.

Professional clubs can utilise resources, curriculum and tools from the RFL or develop and implement their own programmes within national guidelines.