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Kings of Anglia Issue 10 Magazine Offer

Training centre impresses minister

PUBLISHED: 12:56 17 October 2001 | UPDATED: 10:40 03 March 2010

SPORTS minister Richard Caborn, a Sheffield United supporter, could not help but be impressed when he officially opened the Ipswich Town Football Club Training Centre.

SPORTS minister Richard Caborn, a Sheffield United supporter, could not help but be impressed when he officially opened the Ipswich Town Football Club Training Centre.

"I have seen a number of Academies – and this is the 38th in the country – and Ipswich are right up there at the top of the Premiership," he said.

"This is football in the 21st century. This is not just for football development but will be used for career development as well."

The Centre, which cost £2 million with a further £1 million a year to run and maintain, is designed as a primary centre of excellence in the region – with Town's community training and development centres benefiting as well as Academy scholars and first team professionals who train side by side.

The Ipswich Town Academy, who won the Under 17 Premier League title last season, will be permanently based at the new Training Centre where in excess of 230 of the region's most talented young footballers will be coached each week.

Ipswich chairman, David Sheepshanks said: "The strength of the cub's commitment to training and development – at all ages – is clearly demonstrated by our investment in this centre.

"Both recent and future success for Ipswich Town depends heavily on the quality of coaching and continuous improvement, and for these facilities to be most effective we need them to match the quality of our coaching programme.

"The Academy is pivotal to on-going progress and over the next ten years we have set ourselves an ambitious target of seeing the number of home grown players in the first team squad rise towards 50%.

"Our aim is to bring out the very best of those talents that each individual possesses, in order to develop a winning team."

Ipswich Town's first team squad boasts three home grown players in Titus Bramble, Darren Bent and Richard Naylor.

Town mnager, George Burley added: "The youth system at Ipswich Town has always had a tremendous reputation for producing and nurturing its own talent. We are very proud of that reputation and have to work hard to maintain it."

Most notably Ipswich Town has also developed a number of England internationals, including Richard Wright, Kieron Dyer and James Scowcroft. Burley joined the cub as a youth team player and quickly progressed to the first team to play 500 games for the senior side.

The Training Centre, covering approximately 40 acres, hosts up to 350 matches per season and on average 165 squad sessions per month.

The facility includes: 12 – one of which is floodlit and one field turf.

Two 60 x 40 yard training areas

Floodlit goalkeepers' training area

Sports Dome

Ten dressing rooms

Parents' lounge

Recreational room

Treatment room

Gym and rehabilitation centre

Office accommodation and coaches room

Laundry centre

Full catering facilities.

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