Coaches join the Warwick wolfpack for three day camp
FOOTBALL: The short calls of the West Bromwich Albion Academy coaching staff is one of the lasting memories for Warwick Wolves Academy head coach Tim Gaske from this week's ID and development camp.
Gaske organised a camp that attracted 48 players to Queens Park this week, where three coaches from West Bromwich Albion in England explained many of the finer points of the game.
"Can you make the field big?” is one expression in Warwick for spreading out in attack.
At the West Bromwich Albion Academy, all you need to say is "flower”.
"They use the same terminology across their academy squads but when they get to the top teams, it is different,” Gaske said.
WBA coach Jake Locke found the kids in Warwick welcoming and down to earth.
"It's a really good, open environment in Warwick,” he said.
While he hasn't offered any Warwick players a trial in the West Bromwich Albion category 1 academy, he said there were players in the Warwick camp good enough to be considered for category 2 or 3 football club academies in England.
"DBS Sports Tours, which organised our trip, has links with a number of football clubs,” he said.
"We were surprised by the quality of the players in Warwick, many can play off both feet.”
He said some academies wouldn't even consider a player who wasn't good (kicking) on both feet.
While WBA work hard to develop players on both feet, the Wimbledon Academy gets a player to wear a blue sock on their weaker foot and then teammates push the ball towards the weaker foot at training.
"That is one way to encourage players to be competent on both feet so they can return to two white socks,” he said.
The youngest player at the camp was Killarney junior Jake Fox, who has just turned seven.
His father Adam Fox knows a little about training after completing a Ultraman World Championship in Hawaii and said he was impressed with the three outstanding days of coaching.
"They were good at communicating with the kids. Jake was a Liverpool supporter but there is a good chance he will now jump across to West Bromwich Albion,” Adam said.
Both Gaske and Locke agree there is a strong chance they will do it all again and have a 2018 camp.
Locke said he was confident the Wolves Academy would follow on coaching with the same philosophy as on show this week in Warwick.
Gaske said some of this year's participants would be likely starters for another WBA Academy ID Camp next year.
He is always keen to receive expressions of interest from new players interested in attending a camp next year. He can be contacted on 0434211441.
Locke was joined by fellow WBA Academy coaches Chris Foreman and Greg Burgess in Warwick. There was a mix of parents and coaches on Monday night when participants gained a good background of the WBA academy at a seminar.