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Newcastle United forges Academy link with Larne FC

Newcastle United's Academy has established a strategic relationship with NIFL Irish Premiership champions Larne Football Club that will see the clubs collaborating across youth development.

The clubs will work closely together to explore best practice as they develop their respective talent pathways, with staff connecting with their counterparts to share knowledge and experience across coach development, scouting and recruitment.

The link-up will also facilitate new experiences on the pitch, with the potential for young players to move between the clubs in either direction.

At senior men's level, Larne have enjoyed unprecedented success in recent years, culminating in the Invermen lifting the Premiership title for the first time in the club's 134-history this summer under manager Tiernan Lynch.

Women's football is another key area for both clubs. Newcastle United Women have become the first fully professional side in the FA Women's National League for the 2023/24 campaign, while Larne's women’s team this year took its place in the top tier of Northern Irish football after a number of promotions in the last five years.

Dan Ashworth, sporting director at Newcastle United, said: "We are very pleased to be working alongside Larne Football Club as we develop and expand our talent pathway.

"I have been hugely impressed by Kenny Bruce and his team, and this will be a great opportunity to share best practice and innovations that will benefit both clubs.

"Our next generations of talent will only support and sustain both clubs' future successes and we look forward to supporting one another on our respective journeys."

Larne owner Kenny Bruce said: "We have been involved in extremely positive discussions with Newcastle United for some time over a strategic working relationship, which we feel can be mutually beneficial.

“At Larne, we have made no secret that our aim is to work with the top young talent on the island of Ireland and we have been making changes to our Academy at all levels, as we seek to make this aim a reality.

“Newcastle United, particularly through Dan Ashworth, has recognised the strides we have made within our structure and the emphasis we are placing on developing the best young players.

"At all levels it is clear both Newcastle United and Larne are clubs moving in the right direction and we feel this affiliation will play a huge part in helping to grow that momentum.

"We are very excited to see what the future holds for players, coaches and staff as we work together over the coming weeks, months and years."

"Our next generations of talent will only support and sustain both clubs' future successes and we look forward to supporting one another on our respective journeys."

Dan Ashworth, sporting director

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