Manchester City Football Club is busy developing both Etihad Stadium and its proposed training facility. It has undertaken a public consultation on the Youth Development and Training Facility on 80 acres of brown field land diagonally opposite the Etihad Stadium. The opinions of the residents of East Manchester will help shape the club’s submission for planning approval. Planning consent to improve the land in Openshaw West, acquired by the Club over the past two years, was granted in June and remediation work on the site is under way.
Key elements and benefits of the proposals are as follows:
The centre would not only provide the Club with a competitive edge in terms of recruitment of players of all ages, but would also more than meet the requirements for a grade 1 Academy as set out by the Premier League’s new Elite Player Performance Plan.
All aspects of the Club’s youth development, first team training and operations functions would be brought into the one location in the heart of East Manchester and would include:
- A new Academy for up to 400 young players with classrooms for 200
- On site accommodation for junior and senior players
- 16 football pitches, up to 12 of them dedicated to players aged from 8 to 18
- A state of the art first team building with changing rooms, gym, refectory and injury and rehab centre
- A 7,000 capacity stadium for youth matches
- Staff offices and a dedicated media centre
- A bridge linking the site to the Etihad Stadium and the rest of the Etihad Campus
Garry Cook, CEO of Manchester City Football Club said:
Manchester City’s ambition is to be a successful and sustainable football club and youth recruitment and development through a top class facility is a key component of that ambition. Our research to date has been painstaking and our planning comprehensive and whilst our plans would inevitably have a positive impact on both our young and established playing talent, the regenerative and economic impact for our community should not be underestimated. We welcome the views of all of the communities we serve as we seek to gain planning permission for this most exciting of proposals.
Sir Richard Leese, leader of Manchester City Council, said:
The partnership between Manchester City Football Club, the Council and New East Manchester would accelerate the regeneration of the area, delivering significant community and economic benefits. This new facility would help us continue to improve education and skills and will create jobs and other opportunities for local residents as well as being a further example of the club’s investment in the area.
It would be complementary to other proposed developments in the area, which would combine together to fulfil our vision for East Manchester as a centre for elite sport.