The Hatters are happy to announce an exciting new restructuring in the youth development department.
The set-up reshuffle comes as the Club enters the EPPP (Elite Player Performance Plan) for the first time as well as news that Head of Youth Gregg Broughton is to further his career away at Kenilworth Road with Premier League Norwich City.
With Gregg’s departure comes the opportunity for others, and the Town are delighted to welcome three new faces into the youth department.
One face is a familiar one: Wayne Turner, who takes on the mantle as of Head of Youth Football. Wayne has had a long association with the Hatters having appeared 82 times at Kenilworth Road as a player as well as coaching at various youth levels.
Wayne will be assisted by Matt Stannard who has joined from Wycombe Wanderers as Youth Operations Manager, and Lee Cowley who has become Youth Coaching Manager.
Matt has valued experience of football administration and will be responsible for the day-to-day running of the Academy; whilst Lee, himself a former manager at local level and youth coach at Kenilworth Road for 15 years, will oversee the club’s coaches across all age groups from Under-9s to Under-18s.
With a dedicated administrative point of contact, Matt’s role will enable coaches to focus on football and coaching.
Managing director Gary Sweet told lutontown.co.uk: “As a board, 2020 put youth development as one of the cornerstones of our vision for the Football Club and this hasn’t wavered, despite the enormous challenges we have faced behind the scenes.
“Despite the Football League cutting our funding from £180,000 to £90,000 after relegation, and then cutting it to zero after losing two successive Play-Off finals our investors have continued to back this key area. Their investment has almost reached £750,000 in this area alone since taking over four years ago.
“The importance that youth football plays at our football club is hugely significant, and we owe massive gratitude to our shareholders for enabling our restructuring plans at youth level to go ahead.
“More importantly, the role our youth section plays on the pitch will be more significant in the coming years and beyond. Youth development is never a quick fix, but it is the only way to progress.
“We have recently signed Alasan Ann and Newman Carney on professional deals whilst also agreeing terms with nine new scholars who will feature for the Under-18s next season under the guidance of Paul Driver.
“The future is most definitely bright and our restructuring plans are hugely exciting. Not only are we employing more people – which will give players at all youth levels a dedicated point of contact – but across the board we have invested in quality people too.
“On behalf of all the board members and shareholders I would like to welcome and wish all our new faces good luck at Luton Town.
“We would also like to pay tribute to Gregg who has done a marvellous job over the past six years at this club and wish him well for future away from Kenilworth Road.”
With changes afoot, Sweet also called for supporters to continue to back Supporters of Youth Development whose fundraising initiatives have played a major role in supporting the club’s youth section.
“The importance of Solyd at this crucial time as we enter another season in the Blue Square Bet Premier is vital,” said Sweet.
“Their staunch efforts, hard work and loyalty is incredible and they will play a key role again next season with a series of events and fundraising activities planned throughout the season.”
For further information and to donate to Solyd please visit www.solyd.co.uk.