Paul Fairclough says it would take at least ’10/12 years before you really really start reaping the benefits,’ from the academy.
Fairclough told BBC London 94.9 that it was ‘fantastic’ that Tony Kleanthous has secured the deal to redevelop the area because Barnet fall way behind the standards of other Football League clubs.
‘Barnet got relegated I don`t know how long ago, ten years ago, something like that and they`re license, they`re centre of excellence, they`re academy taken away…it`s the lifeblood of a football club for developing the young players and Barnet have never really recovered from that and they lag behind everybody else in the football league,’ he said.
‘We`ve got a first team and that`s it. We`re just beginning starting to develop our football in the community now. We`ve got a tentative link with an academy called Protec but we need to be running our own we need organic growth at the football club if we`re going to move forward and that`s exactly what we intend to do…It`s just going to be fantastic for me as a manager and a coach and for the young developing players.’
And Fairclough said the development, which is planned to finish for next season’s pre-season training in July, would be a ‘selling point’ for attracting players to the club. However he did point out, ‘Footballers don`t really look at those sort of things and thankfully I`m glad because if they see that Barnet`s invested 11 million they think well hang on, maybe I should have a little bit of that for my wage packet.’
The manager will be bringing in his own development model for the academy once it has been established, and it finally gives Fairclough a chance to develop young players and give them the mindset and abilities to be able to turn professional.
‘I`ve got a development model that I`ve had for years that I`ve been developing myself for years, and I`ve been waiting for the opportunity to put it into place,’ he said. ‘It needs to start as early as 6 years old to ingrain those methods and those ideas within those young fertile minds at 6 years old so you could be talking about 10/12 years before you really really start reaping the benefits, if you do it properly and I believe we will do it properly. We`ll have to build an academy and we`ll have to pull in all age groups but those 10 year olds and 11 year olds 12 year olds, they`ve already got minds sets that are very difficult to change, believe it or not, at that young age…I really want to develop the young players and bring them through with fresh young minds.’