Project Braver

Providing a pathway for a career in and out of football

What Is Project Braver?

Project Braver is a revolutionary course being run in partnership with Clyde Football Club, New College Lanarkshire, North Lanarkshire Leisure and Advance Construction.

It gives young players an education or full-time employment alongside the chance to make it as a professional footballer, with a clear pathway from the under-23s through to the first team.

About the Partnership

Clyde FC has linked with New College Lanarkshire, North Lanarkshire Leisure and Advance Construction to provide an opportunity for young aspiring footballers and students to achieve their dreams.

Players on the course will have unique access to Clyde FC and, if they can prove their skills and dedication, may be considered for the first team.

The College will work cohesively with Clyde FC to provide a streamlined training and educational programme for the students and players.

The Club

Clyde FC is a professional football club currently playing in Scottish League 2. The team is managed by the highly experienced Danny Lennon and boasts a high calibre of coaches for both in its first team and youth team.

Along with the success of the first team and a focus on developing young players, the club has received the prestigious SFA Quality Mark Award at Standard and Development Level for its Football Schools in Cumbernauld and Glasgow Southside.

Initially starting with the under-23s, Clyde FC can give an ambitious footballer with the right skills, discipline and dedication the opportunity to train with industry professionals and play against high-calibre teams, with opportunities thereafter being limitless.

How Project Braver works

Players will be invited to a trial match followed by a trial training session, which will be overlooked by experienced professional football coaches including representatives from The Catalan Football Federation.

A number of players will then be selected onto the course, when the club will sit down with each player and decide which pathway to choose i.e. education, trade etc. The player will then split his time between studying/working and training to become a professional footballer.  

This ensures that each player has the best of both worlds where they have the chance to make it as a professional footballer as well as having a career outside of football.

The Catalan Football Federation

The club has ties with the Catalan Football Federation which will be utilised to help set up matches for Clyde under-23s. It will also be used to help attract some Catalan-based players to the club.

Football Season

Instead of playing in a youth league, the club has taken the decision to play in a series of friendly matches between August and May. Friendly matches will be set up against teams of a higher standard to bring the players out of their comfort zones and test them. A similar model has been used at Rangers, Southampton and Tottenham Hotspur where they took the decision to play a series of elite friendlies instead of playing in a league against players of a similar standard. This approach has the aim of accelerating players towards the first team.

Life Skills, Mental Strength and Helping Those in Need

Project Braver is not just about becoming a better footballer but also about becoming a better person. Participants on the course will learn skills which will stand them in good stead not just in football but in life. They will develop mental skills such as resilience which will prepare them for any setbacks in football, their careers or in life in general. Players will also learn and develop people skills and communication skills as well as other things such as respect.

Community Foundation

“Our success as a footballing nation coincided with our football clubs being the heartbeat of our communities. Project Braver is an exciting initiative that has a clear vision to connect Clyde FC with the local community, by helping to meet the needs of the next generation, using football as the focus.”

- Danny Lennon, Clyde FC Manager

Clyde FC has a long and proud tradition of engaging with local communities. The creation of the Clyde FC Community Foundation demonstrates that the club is serious about helping and supporting the local community.

Using the power of football and sport, the Foundation has developed a number of initiatives to support people in the local community, from pre-school children at 2 to 4 years, people with mental health issues or delivering health and fitness classes to adults.

Project Braver is the club’s latest initiative to help local youngsters get into full time employment or education as well as the opportunity to become a professional footballer.

Mentoring

Participants on Project Braver will be taught, mentored and coached by professionals with years of experience in football and sport including former national players and current club coaches. Players will have the opportunity to benefit from each individuals experience, knowledge and support throughout their time on the course and beyond.

Sandy Clark: Sandy is a UEFA Pro Licenced Coach and is currently the Assistant Manager at Dunfermline AFC after spells with Albion Rovers, Kilmarnock, Queen of the South and Aberdeen. An extensive playing career saw Sandy play for teams in both England – West Ham Utd – and in Scotland – Airdrie, Hearts and Rangers. As well as playing and coaching, Sandy has managerial experience taking charge of Hamilton Academicals, Berwick Rangers and St Johnstone.

David Hay: David – a former Scotland International, Chelsea and Celtic player – boasts managerial and coaching experience with clubs in the UK and Europe. Lillestrom, Livingston, Dunfermline and Celtic have all been led by David and he brings vast levels of experience and knowledge to the course.

Norrie Innes: Norrie was appointed as Clyde Chairman in 2017. A Chartered Engineer by profession, Norrie is a registered FIFA agent and holds the SFA Coaching C Licence. His impressive list of business interests and achievements include the design management and construction of major regeneration and public realm projects throughout the UK, mixed use property development and social enterprise initiatives.

Danny Lennon: Danny is a UEFA Pro License holder and a very experienced and respected figure within the Scottish game and beyond. He has already enjoyed early success as a manager, including back-to-back league titles with Cowdenbeath and a historic League Cup win with St. Mirren. As a player, he enjoyed a long and successful career, making over 350 senior appearances for clubs including Hibernian, Raith Rovers and Partick Thistle. Danny is the current Clyde FC manager, after joining the club in 2017.

Allan Moore: Allan is a UEFA A Licence and Youth Licence holder and has played for a number of clubs including St Johnstone, Queen of the South, Partick Thistle and Hearts. Allan was former manager of Arbroath FC, managed Stirling Albion to two promotions and narrowly missed out on taking Greenock Morton to the top flight of Scottish Football. Allan is the current Clyde FC assistant manager and has a wealth of experience in coaching and management both at full time and at part time level.

Alasdair Breton: Ally is a successful youth coach with Hamilton Academicals and Stirling Albion and holds an Advanced Children’s Licence. He brings an in depth knowledge of content to the coaching structure by gleaning current best practice from the Pro Youth set up across Scotland. With an academic background in sports science and coaching, Ally brings extensive knowledge to the department to assist the development of the Project Braver participants.

Jim Griffin: A former Motherwell FC player and Scottish Cup winner, Jim’s seven year career at Motherwell was cut short due to injury but allowed him to move into coaching. He took charge of the youth team before progressing to reserve team manager and spending time as assistant manager with the first team under Billy Davies. Jim has extensive experience as a match analyst having worked for Celtic, Dunfermline and Motherwell to produce opposition analysis reports.

Todd Lumsden: Todd is the Curriculum and Quality Leader for Sport at the Cumbernauld and Broadwood campuses for New College Lanarkshire which is where Project Braver is based. Todd holds the UEFA A Licence and a Master’s Degree in Performance Coaching.

What courses can I study?

There are a number of courses available to study alongside the football training commitments. For a full list of the courses available please visit the New College Lanarkshire website.

Do I have to study?

Education isn’t for everyone which is why we can also provide players with an alternative route to education. In partnership with Advance Construction, we can offer players the chance to learn a trade via an apprenticeship. Additionally, if the player wishes to work for a different prospective employer, they can do so on the basis that the employer allows the player to train with Clyde FC on a Tuesday, Wednesday afternoon and Thursday.

What are the age restrictions?

This course is open for 16-23 year olds.

When do the courses begin?

Courses begin in August 2018

Weekly schedule

Players will study their chosen courses on a Monday, Wednesday (am) and Friday with football training on a Tuesday, Wednesday (pm) and Thursday.

The facilities

The facilities available at Broadwood Stadium are state-of-the-art, which provides an ideal learning environment. On site is a multi-purpose sports complex which includes a fully equipped gym, football pitch. There are also wider college facilities available in New College Lanarkshire’s six campuses across Lanarkshire.

How do I apply?

We are currently taking applications to participate in the trials match being held in June 2018. To register your interest, please fill out our application form and return it as soon as possible.

Successful applicants will then be invited to participate in a trial match where the selection process will commence.

Summary

  • Chance for players to receive a Higher Education Qualification or to learn a trade whilst also having the opportunity to become a professional footballer
  • Clyde FC will consider highly-skilled players for the first team
  • Coaching from football professionals
  • Students will be learning practical skills side by side with professional football players and under the eye of Clyde manager Danny Lennon
  • Knowledge and skills learned on the course will benefit students as players and set them up for a career both in and out of football
  • The variety of modules on the course can open up various opportunities across a wide range of business sectors and industries
  • Access to state-of-the-art facilities, including a fully equipped gym, football pitch, and the wider college facilities available in New College Lanarkshire’s six campuses across Lanarkshire
  • All the perks that come with student life, including student discounts, access to college facilities, learner support and funding as well as a Passport to Leisure membership with North Lanarkshire Leisure.