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New Academy role for Dodds

Mike Dodds
Mike Dodds

In Mike we have someone who is an exceptional coach with a deep understanding of player development and the pathway through to the senior squad.

Kristjaan Speakman

Mike Dodds has been appointed to a key role in the Blues Academy.

He has become Head of the Professional Development Phase.

This is a new position that has been created after a review of all aspects of the Academy over the past six months.

Dodds, 34, was previously Blues Lead Youth Development Phase Coach.

"Although we have seen success in our model, we’re always seeking to improve and feel this adjustment to the structure makes our working practices even stronger," commented Academy Manager Kristjaan Speakman.

"The players all require different things at different times and whilst we want it to be bespoke at each age level we also want continuity and consistency of message which we feel this model will provide.”

“In Mike we have someone who is an exceptional coach with a deep understanding of player development and the pathway through to the senior squad," he added. "The combination of him and our lead coaches at each age group really strengthens our programme moving forward.”

Dodds' appointment will allow for greater continuity and cohesion between the Under-16s and Under-23s age groups. He will oversee the Professional Development Phase programme and work closely with the coaches at Under-16s, 18s and 23s.

Dodds has been a full-time coach with Blues for 11 years and after Pep Clotet's departure as Head Coach, stepped up to assist Steve Spooner and Craig Gardner at First Team level, along with Academy Head of Football Stuart English.

He has been instrumental in helping to bring through players like Nathan Redmond, Demarai Gray and was a big influence on the development of Jude Bellingham.

He has predominantly coached Blues Under-16s in recent seasons but during the last campaign was also with the Under-23s for an extended spell.

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