GARETH HOLMES LEAVES TO JOIN BURTON
Youth team coach Holmes leaves Stags for League Two Burton
EVENING POST, June 30, 2010
MANSFIELD Town youth team manager Gareth Holmes has left to become Burton Albion's new Centre of Excellence manager.
Holmes, 27, was appointed first team coach last season by manager David Holdsworth, helping the club to finish ninth.
But the former Ilkeston and Hucknall player was moved to his youth team position earlier this summer when the Stags appointed a new first team assistant manager in Duncan Russell.
It is another blow for the Stags after the announcement last week that they would close their Centre of Excellence.
"I enjoyed my time at Mansfield and I wish them every success, but this is a great opportunity for me," said Holmes.
"I know Pesch (Paul Peschisolido) from when we were both at Derby and it gives me the chance to have a blank canvas and work with some new people.
"There is an old saying that you are always working towards your next job and the fact I had two offers, including Burton, shows I must have been doing something right at Mansfield."
Holmes says he has no animosity towards Holdsworth despite Russell having been brought in above him.
He added: "When we get into football we all understand the kind of industry it is. You know things are going to change and have to accept that.
"I had a good rapport with the people I worked with at Mansfield and I left there on good terms.
"I think David and I will still speak and meet up outside football. I am not one to hold a grudge."
Holmes says Mansfield must be careful not to let the best young players slip through the net now their Centre of Excellence has gone.
"The biggest thing is how the football club tackles the issue of not having the system," he said. "Mansfield has always had a good catchment area for players. The important thing is not to lose out on that talent in the future."
...the club also announced the launch of a new centre of excellence to development young talent.
The cente will have an intake of more than 70 youngsters between the ages of 12 and 16, as well as 10 full-time scholars, formerly known as apprenctices.
Former Leicester City defender Mike Whitlow has been appointed Head of Scholars and ex-Derby County midfield player Gareth Holmes will run the centre of excellence.
The scheme will run alongside the existing youth development programme in conjunction with Burton College, which will again be headed up by Mark Sale.
As well as entering the younger age groups in leagues, Albion will field teams in the Youth Alliance against fellow Football League youth sides and also the Central Alliance against Football Conference reserve teams.
Burton Albion commercial director, Fleur Robinson, said: 'This is the first time the club has run such a facility. It is something we looked at as a possibility for last season but now the time seems right to introduce this.
“We see it as a key part of the club's development and hopefully helping to consolidate and develop our standing as a Football League club.”
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