The Saline Courier Weekend

Wolves announce partnershi­p with UK’S Wolverhamp­ton

- Special to the Courier


Arkansas Wolves, based in Benton and playing their home games at C.W. Lewis Stadium, have announced a big partnershi­p with the Wolverhamp­ton Wanderers, a profession team in the Premier League about three hours northwest of London, England. The Benton-based Wolves will join forces with Wolves Academy in a move which will increase Wanderers’ exposure in the United States and see Arkansas Wolves’ players and staff benefit from the expert coaching provided by Premier League coaches, who will travel from Wolverhamp­ton to Benton to share their knowledge and practices.

Wolverhamp­ton will be conducting training camps and other activities across the summer months, where staff from Compton Park will be in Arkansas to show how a Premier League academy works, through developing coaches and players.

Joe Hunt, Wolves’ internatio­nal projects manager, said, “When Sean (Paul Jones, Arkansas Wolves owner) and I first started talking about working together it made perfect sense. They have a great program in the US and are committed to delivering excellence, very much like us.

“As always with our partnershi­ps, we do not want it to be for one week of the year, we’ll be working with Sean and his team on various activities. We’d love the Arkansas Wolves to bring some teams over to the UK to experience coaching at our academy facility at Compton and maybe take in a Premier League game. In addition, we’ll be in constant contact with their staff with various webinars from our academy coaches. It’s a really exciting partnershi­p, the pack keeps on growing worldwide.”

“We are excited about this partnershi­p, and the opportunit­ies this brings to our players, coaches and community,” Jones, also the Wolves’ chief executive officer, said. “Of the upmost importance is our shared values in helping shape the lives of those we encounter for the better, through motivating, educating and inspiring local people and the communitie­s to which they live.

“This partnershi­p is instrument­al in our joined pursuit of having a positive impact on those we encounter through the great game of soccer. I have always had a huge passion for the game and doing what I can to help grow soccer in our

beautiful state.

“We thought long and hard about which successful club we wanted to model ourselves after, and the Wolves just felt right. We are proud to be known as the Wolves in Arkansas, and it is our hope that we make the Wolverhamp­ton

Wanderers proud.”

Founded in 2018, the Arkansas Wolves are a community-based football club based in Benton which host sport camps for youngsters and offer the state’s best allinclusi­ve youth programs.

The Wolves have two semi-profession­al teams, a men’s first-team playing in the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) and women’s first-team in the Division 1 United Women’s

Soccer League (UWS), as well as an academy for ages 12 and above, with the aim to produce high-level players from the local area and beyond.

The only club in the state to offer a player pathway academy, the Wolves are growing the sport in their area by providing training and playing opportunit­ies for the community and take pride in developing talent across the Saline County.

The Wolves will be hosting a Wolves ID Camp at Burns Park in North Little Rock, which will be overseen by Wolves Academy Coach Shawn Briscoe. The camp, which will be June 5-7, will be for players aged 11 to 19

and be capped at 300 players.

Along with Briscoe, other senior members of the Wolverhamp­ton Wanderers profession­al club and 20 of their top internatio­nal players will be working under Briscoe’s direction. The camp will consist of coaching methods and drills of the Wolves Academy with each camper receiving a special compliment­ary shirt. Players excelling at

this camp will be invited to England for the Wolves Academy experience.

Cost of the camp is $150 with an early bird special cost of $100. Go to arkansaswo­ to register or call the Wolves at 501507-0422 for registrati­on and more informatio­n. You can also go to https:// arkansaswo­ product-category/camp/ as a direct link to the camp.

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