Former Villa, Albion and Wolves boss Brian Little was today appointed director of coaching of non-league Chasetown’s new academy.
Starting this month, the 59-year-old is to spearhead the Scholars’ Academy, a new partnership between Chasetown and Stafford College enabling youngsters to combine a professional football development programme with A-level equivalent qualifications.
Chasetown chairman John Donnelly has known Little for several years in his capacity as chairman of Aston Villa Former Players’ Association.
Little, who is holder of the FA’s Pro-License and covers Championship games in Dublin for Irish TV, said: “The Scholars’ Academy combines the attributes of a successful local football club with Stafford College to give talented players an opportunity to fulfil their potential when they have suffered the disappointments the game can throw at them.
“It’s something I really believe in and I’m looking forward to working with the students and all those involved.”
Outside of his broadcast interests, Little has started a programme for players released by league clubs.
Little, who managed Villa to their last major trophy when he won the League Cup in 1996, also managed Darlington, Stoke, Hull, Tranmere and Wrexham, but has been out of the pro-game since being sacked by Gainsborough Trinity in August 2011.
The partnership will build on the successful academy for 16-18-year-old students established by Chasetown’s former player-coach Andy Turner and chief executive Mike Joiner in 2009.
Joiner said: “We’re delighted to have secured the services of Brian, who is extremely passionate and supportive of junior and youth football. Our academy ethos fits perfectly with Brian’s existing work.
“It’s another example of why Chasetown is an attractive proposition for young players.”
The academy aims to provide a second chance for school-leavers and players discarded by clubs.
Anyone interested should contact Stafford College’s enrolment centre on 01785 275468.