Andy Marshall kicks off £1.5m complex

PUBLISHED: 12:04 04 June 2010 | UPDATED: 17:34 06 July 2010

A STATE-of-the-art new footballing facility in Lowestoft was hailed by former Norwich and Ipswich goalkeeper Andy Marshall this week during a special opening ceremony.

A STATE-of-the-art new footballing facility in Lowestoft was hailed by former Norwich and Ipswich goalkeeper Andy Marshall this week during a special opening ceremony.

The £1.5m sports facility - Barnard's Centre Point - was unveiled by numerous partners on Tuesday. And Marshall and Bryan Gunn were among the first to try out the new surface as they led a goalkeepers' training session on the pitches.

Marshall's Sells Goalkeeping Academy provided two hours of professional training to youngsters, and will return again in August and September.

Marshall said of his academy, which is endorsed by England goalkeeper Robert Green: “We give professional training to grass roots football. It is predominantly ex-professional players giving an understanding of what it is like to be a professional. There is nothing else like this.”

Delighted with this week's unveiling, Waveney Youth FC will now be taking full advantage of the “fantastic” facilities as they are an official stakeholder in the Centre Point full size, all-weather floodlit training pitch at Barnards Meadow.

“We aim to use these fantastic facilities to coincide with the club's next stage of our player development programme,” Waveney Youth FC Club Development Officer Mark Gamble told The Journal.

“The club now has the capacity to train all of the players of the same age group at the same time and therefore generate a positive club atmosphere and give a real squad feeling amongst the players and parents, but more importantly it will allow the coaches to observe the players in a squad environment and work with the players to improve their skills, techniques play small sided games and practices and put them on a pathway which will give them the best chance to play at the level their ability will allow and reach their full potential.”

The training schedule is: Tuesday 6pm - 7pm, Under 8's (Current School Year 3), Tuesday 7pm - 8pm, Under 9's (Current School Year 4), Wednesday 6pm - 7pm, Under 6's and Under 7's (Current School Year 1 and 2), Wednesday 7pm - 8pm, Under 10 (Current school year 5).

“The club would like to welcome any new players who would be interested in joining the club and would like to invite them to come along to the training sessions above at no extra cost,” Gamble added. “The membership fee for 2010/2011 will be £130 per year which includes all league / cup matches and training sessions held at the club's two excellent home venues, Barnards Meadow and The Denes High School. Kit is usually supplied by our generous sponsors at no extra cost to the player.”

With the expansion of the training sessions that the club will now be able to provide next season, locals interested in coaching are being urged to consider coaching with a club where coaching development is equally as important as player development.

“If you have not got the required qualification, the club will provide the coaching courses through the FA,” Gamble added.

If you would like more information about the training sessions for any age from under six year olds through to U17s for both boys or girls or you are you would like to become a coach or manager, email or telephone head coach, Sean Everett on 07921 649332.

For more on the Sells Goalkeeping Academy, visit:

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