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Academy News

Follow in Elicha's footsteps with the Shadow Scholar programme

23 March 2022

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Shadow Scholar coach Richard Belcher says Elicha Ahui ’s mindset and desire to improve means him signing his first professional contract comes as no surprise.

Having been released from Nottingham Forest at the age of 16, Elicha joined Belcher’s programme giving him the opportunity to play high level football while pursuing further education.

Belcher said: “Elicha’s progress at the club since joining the shadow programme nearly two years ago has been really exciting. Physically he has developed really well over the last couple of seasons which has certainly helped his progression.

“His attitude and application right from the very start has been first class. He had long days traveling in from Nottingham in his first year but Elicha took everything in his stride, stepping up well each time he progressed through the pathway which is not an easy thing to do. As a person he has always remained level headed, humble with a great attitude. Elicha deserves huge credit for what he has achieved and has shown fantastic desire and a great mentality to get the contract he deserves.

“The Shadow Scholar programme is great for those like Elicha who may need a bit more time to develop. Or other young football enthusiasts who want to experience a high level of training in a professional environment. Daily training at a fantastic facility with opportunities to play in league games against other football clubs including the likes of Everton and Liverpool gives the players a brilliant football experience.

It is incredibly difficult to achieve a professional contract, but the programme will give young people an opportunity complete their education and experience what it is like to be an athlete with opportunities to progress.”

If you are interested in the shadow scholar programme, the club will be holding an assessment day for players looking for post-16 opportunities on Wednesday 6 April.

To register you interest for the trial, fill out the form HERE.

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