A PARTNERSHIP has launched a new scheme to deliver a Football Academic Programme for both boys and girls in Herefordshire.

Hereford Sixth Form College (HSFC), Hereford FC and Herefordshire FA are in a long-term partnership to deliver an under-18 Football Academic Programme, starting in 2022.

From next year, the football programme currently delivered at the college will be rebranded, with the partners developing the programme.

Students attending the programme are offered the opportunity to develop both their education and football, with competitive games and college education.

Hereford manager Josh Gowling will play an active role in setting the playing philosophy for the centre, the team will play under Hereford FC branding and players will have the chance to play at Edgar Street, alongside a range of other opportunities.

Gowling said: “Myself and the football club are delighted with this partnership.

“It gives a platform for young people in Hereford to receive not only a quality education but also the best football coaching.

“I will be working closely with the football programme so that we can coach these young aspiring football players the identity of Hereford FC.

“If any make the grade, this will make the transition into the first team a lot smoother.”

Alan Darfi, Herefordshire FA (HFA) chief executive said that when they expanded the Player Development Centre, which is run by Jamie Pitman (PACES coaching and former Hereford United Manager), the HFA agreed to offer something for players once they reached 16.

"It was essential that this provided not only an excellent footballing experience but, more importantly, a solid education," said Darfi.

"The fact that HSFC offers the programme to all students, including those completing A Levels as well as BTEC’s, was a massive incentive."

For further details on the current programme visit https://www.hereford.ac.uk/enrichment/sport-and-healthy-lifestyle/sports-academies/football/