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VIDEO: Owls academy weekend skill sessions

18 February 2015

Back in September, the Owls academy introduced Saturday morning skill sessions for the younger age groups named, ‘The Owls 8 Skills Programme to Music’ at Middlewood Road.

The morning has taken the format of four stations that change every two weeks, with players working in short blocks.

The key areas of focus include ball mastery, receiving, passing, change of direction, 1-v-1 moves, ball striking and finishing.

Explaining more, foundation phase coach Matt Burton said: “The idea behind it is to provide a fun environment where the children can learn skills and get a lot of ball contact.

“The players have really enjoyed the mornings and have taken on board some of the key technical topics delivered.

“The music has created a great vibe inside the dome and the tempo at which the players work has been excellent as a result.”

Under-11 coach James Ellis is a big admirer of the programme and added: “The kids really enjoy it which is the main thing.

“They get a lot of time on the ball and we’ve had a really positive response from parents and coaches at the club.

“It’s about fun and enjoyment in a professional environment and a great place for them to practise their skills.”

Burton continued: “The sessions cover passing and receiving, ball striking, head tennis, turning, movement and generally all the skills that are needed for the modern day footballer.

“The aim is to progress them through the academy but at this age it is more important to provide a fun environment.

“You hope if they are having fun, they will want to learn more and come back.

“I feel the benefits of the programme are starting to show in the way the players perform on a Sunday morning against other academies.

“Players are managing the ball well and trying the new skills they learn on a Saturday.”

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