The closed season is a time for AFC Croydon Athletic players to recharge their batteries but even for non-league players the break is short.

The players  are already back for pre-season training this month and   off the field, it has been a busy time with major pitch maintenance and  volunteers lending a hand to spruce up the stadium.

Not everyone is taking a break.   The AFC Croydon Athletic Academy is still working hard both on and off the field.

AFC Croydon Athletic, in association with DL Sports Management (DLSM), provides teenage boys ranging from 16-19 year’s of age an opportunity to study while progressing their footballing ability.

Student athletes study over a two-year period to complete a BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sport. Over this period all student athletes complete a number of assignments in anatomy, physiology, fitness, coaching, nutrition, and leading a healthy life style.

With collaboration between education and football the aim is to further each student athlete’s knowledge of the sporting industry enhancing their opportunity to reach their desired goals.

Currently, the Academy has two competitive teams: AFC Croydon Athletic U18s who compete in the Southern Youth League, a midweek evening league offering local competition and cup fixtures. The team made it to the semi final of the FA Youth Cup.

The U19 college team competes in regular midweek day-time fixtures against professional foundations, such as: Charlton FC, West Ham, Crystal Palace and Boreham Wood.  Training sessions are delivered by Uefa B licenced coaches four days a week.

Being part of the Academy gives opportunities to progress their football in the club too with four Academy students making first team appearances last season.

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