Academy Manager reflects on Dawes' departure and what it means looking forwardShrewsbury Town’s Academy Manager Andy Jones hopes the Academy can continue to produce the stars of the future despite Youth Team Manager Ian Dawes leaving the club.
Dawes moved to Bangor City last week to take on the role of First Team Manager and Jones added his thanks to Ian, who had spent two and a half years at the club.
“Over the last 6 or 7 months I obviously got to know Ian really well,” Andy told ShrewsWeb. “I worked very closely with him and he’s been very good for the club and he did a very good job”.
“I think he’s been waiting for that opportunity to work within the first team environment and obviously the opportunity at Bangor was too good to turn down so as a club we wish him all the best”.
Dawes’ departure provides an opportunity for the Academy Staff to reflect on the set up as a whole and Andy believes it’s important the coaches stick together in the short term.
“I think moving forwards we won’t make any changes in the immediate future,” said Andy.
“Matt Rains is going to be in charge of the under-18s as it stands at the moment. He’s been fantastic the last few weeks, he’s a very good coach and he will definitely be in charge for the next month or so moving forwards and then possibly beyond.
“Matt’s reputation over the last two or three years has been outstanding. He’s been assistant for a couple of years and done a very good job and I’m sure he’ll enjoy this next month and stake his claim.
“I think as a club we’ve all been sticking together. We’ve got some very good coaches in the academy. Callum McKenzie has come in and done very well and Ben King as well, so we’ve got good staff and for the immediate future we will be okay.
“Obviously, moving forwards there will be a couple of new posts that people will be able to go for and as soon as we know more we will let you know”.
Increased funding will now allow the creation of a new role, which Jones hopes will improve the standard of coaching within the Academy and lead to the development of better players.
“The Football League in partnership with the Premier League have released some funding which is available to bring in a post which is totally new and is called a Head of Coaching,” said Jones.
“Predominantly, the role is for coach education and this role will support the coaches that we have in the Academy.
“I think it’s a very important role because if you want to build and empire and produce good players then the knock on effect if that you have to have excellent coaches working with them and that’s what this role will help with”.