Monday, February 5th 2018 saw Northern NSW Football (NNSWF) commence the Talent Support Program (TSP) for boys in the 13s and 14s age groups.
This concept is an FFA driven initiative that will be implemented by Member Federations throughout the country.
The aim of the TSP is to raise the technical standard of players in the National Premier League (NPL) environment and to give players an increased opportunity of transitioning to Hyundai A-League Academies.
NPL players in the 13s and 14s age groups were identified and selected through a 5-week trial process in November/December 2017 to make up a squad of 17-18 players in each age group.
These squads will come together to train with the NNSWF High Performance coaches once a week, in addition to their regular club training, for a 30-week duration.
NNSWF aims to provide an environment where the players will really enjoy their football whilst also being challenged every session.
NNSWF Technical Advisor and Coach of TSP, Leo Bertos, said within the program he expects to see significant improvement in the players level of play over the course of the program.
“It was great to have the players back in after their trials and to get the TSP underway. Everyone was excited to get out on the field to start training.” Bertos said.
“We have a lot of talent across both age groups. Many of the players have aspirations to get into the Jets environment and ultimately to become professional football players.”
“Just 3 weeks into the trial process one of the 13s players joined the Jets program full time, showing the players that the opportunities for progression are realistic and attainable.”
“Hopefully, we can progress more players into the Jets environment in future,” Bertos concluded.
Throughout the year, NNSWF Technical Directors will be attending games to identify any players that may have missed out this year to include them in the trial process for season 2019.