Academy is a force for good
Focus on life skills, not just ball skills
Cambuslang Football Academy is an increasing force for good in the community.
Formed in February 2013 by Barry Fleming and David Buchanan, the project initially aimed to reinvigorate two struggling clubs by means of a merger.
Now, over 80 players and 20 coaches take part across six teams, with hundreds of pounds raised for charity in the process. Many of the players now come from outside Cambuslang, such is the club’s reputation.
Barry explained the academy’s roots: “The boys were struggling week in, week out. David was with the other team and we decided to put the two together. I would like to point out that nobody was asked to leave either.
“We both had level three coaching badges so felt that we could offer a bit more than others. The core of the team is still there.”
Fundraising for charity is a vital club ethos, as Barry explained: “We always like to give something back to the community. We’ve always supported the Teenage Cancer Awareness Trust.”
At the end of May, a fun day was held and everybody from the area was invited to take part. With all players donating their fees and adults giving £ 10 each, the club raised £ 647 for charity.
Barry said: “Last year, we raised £270 so we are growing every year. Geraldine Lynch paid £ 50 to take the under-17s in the game versus the coaches. She is a wee gift from God!”
The academy has now expanded to offer a ‘Mini Kickers’ programme for three- to five-year-olds and also seeks to provide more than just football coaching.
In reference to the new under-19 side, Barry said: “That’s the age you want them off the street. We took them, along with the other age groups, to the senior Scottish Cup final for free, we did bubble football and have Christmas parties.”
Sponsors are being sought to help with the financial strains that come with expansion, and Barry remarked: “We are in this to help with life skills, not just football.”