Llanelli Star - - SOCCER -

FOR­MER Wales in­ter­na­tional Chris Llewellyn has joined the coach­ing team at Car­marthen Town.

The ex-winger has been ap­pointed the club academy’s head of coach­ing.

It is a ma­jor coup by the Welsh Premier League club as they look to de­velop the next gen­er­a­tion of stars at Rich­mond Park.

Llewellyn will make the switch from League Two side Colch­ester United, where he held the role of un­der-18s head coach.

His ap­point­ment is the lat­est step in a var­ied ca­reer for Llewellyn, which be­gan when he broke into Nor­wich’s first team as a teenager in 1997-98. He was called into the Welsh squad soon af­ter and won his first in­ter­na­tional cap in a 3-0 vic­tory over Malta in Val­letta.

He won six caps in to­tal, with his soli­tary goal com­ing in the 4-0 vic­tory over Liecht­en­stein in 2006.

Llewellyn also played for Wrex­ham, Bris­tol Rovers, Hartle­pool and Grimsby and made more than 350 ap­pear­ances in the Foot­ball League be­fore end­ing his play­ing ca­reer in the Welsh Premier League with spells at Neath and Llanelli.

He be­gan his coach­ing ca­reer with Swansea City, start­ing out as a youth coach be­fore ac­cept­ing the role as man­ager of the un­der-21 side. Un­der his guid­ance the un­der-21s won the Pro­fes­sional De­vel­op­ment League 2 in 2015.

A Car­marthen state­ment said: “Chris brings with him an im­pres­sive coach­ing CV from which he has led tech­ni­cal, tac­ti­cal, phys­i­cal and phys­i­o­log­i­cal de­vel­op­ment of Swansea City’s elite squads.

“One of Chris’s re­spon­si­bil­i­ties will be to look af­ter the new FAW un­der9s to un­der-11s skill ac­qui­si­tion pro­gramme, de­vel­oped by the FAW Trust.

“Chris will work closely with our academy direc­tor Sean Cresser to de­velop all play­ers with an aim of reach­ing our first team.

“Chris will also look to men­tor and de­velop our coaches within the club, to en­sure the play­ers re­ceive the very best of ed­u­ca­tion while be­ing in­volved in an en­joy­able en­vi­ron­ment.”

Llewellyn, 39, said: “I’m re­ally ex­cited about the chal­lenges that lay ahead.

“I’m re­ally pas­sion­ate about Welsh foot­ball and when the op­por­tu­nity to work in Wales arose I couldn’t turn it down.

“Car­marthen Town are a well-re­spected club and I look for­ward to help­ing the academy and the club in gen­eral push for­ward and en­joy fur­ther suc­cess on and off the pitch.”

Cresser added: “I look for­ward to work­ing along side Chris at the academy.

“His pre­vi­ous ex­pe­ri­ences of work­ing with young play­ers, in par­tic­u­lar, at the high­est level of the game will help us to en­sure that an ex­cel­lent FAW tech­ni­cal pro­gramme is de­liv­ered by a top prac­ti­tioner to the young foot­ballers of Car­marthen.

“This in turn will help those young play­ers to de­velop their tech­ni­cal abil­ity so that they can bet­ter en­joy their foot­ball in an academy en­vi­ron­ment, and re­alise both their own am­bi­tions and our am­bi­tions for them of rep­re­sent­ing Car­marthen Town Foot­ball Club in the Welsh Premier League.”

Mean­while, Car­marthen will face the next gen­er­a­tion of Swansea City stars as part of their build-up to the new sea­son.

The Old Gold will face Swansea’s un­der-23 side at Rich­mond Park on Satur­day, July 20 (2.30pm).

It is one of five friendlies Car­marthen will play. The oth­ers are against Haver­ford­west, Bri­ton Ferry, Llanelli Town, Am­man­ford and Cin­der­ford.

Chris Llewellyn (left) in ac­tion for Nor­wich City in 1999. (In­set) Llewellyn in his role at Swansea City.

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