Town have partnership with Icelandic side StjarnanFleetwood Town FC will embark on their own Icelandic football mission this weekend. Academy coaches Joey Newson and Mason McClelland are travelling to Iceland on Sunday to spend a week with the Club’s partner club, Stjarnan.
The aim of the visit is to strengthen the links between the two clubs and for the Cod Army’s coaches to deliver sessions at their summer camps. Joey and Mason will also be analysing their successful community based academy.
The trip was organised earlier this year following Stjarnan’s visit to Fleetwood, which involved their youth coaches, Halldór Árnason and Thórhallur Siggeirsson, delivering training sessions at Poolfoot Fam.
Stjarnan have 900 children in their academy, all of them recruited from their local area. The first team won the Icelandic top division in 2015, have played in the Champions League and come up against the likes of Inter Milan.
Former Icelandic international and now Fleetwood Town technical director Gretar Steinsson said: “The purpose of the visit is to gain and share Stjarnan’s fantastic youth development programme.
“They have produced a number of international footballers, some that featured against England last week for Iceland at the European Championships.
“It’s no surprise to me to witness what happened last week. The club has done a fantastic job in producing young footballers.
“We see a lot of similarities with Fleetwood Town. They work in a small community and with great success they have recruited, development and promote young talent. Likewise with our new Category three academy status we have been working hard for some time on a similar strategy.
“We want to recruit locally and predominantly players will be sourced from the Fylde Coast and nearby. We want to create the same ethos and give a real community feel to Fleetwood Town."
Fleetwood Town’s long term aim is to create further links and alliances by running a number of exchange visits by taking teams and coaches over to Iceland and allowing them to visit Poolfoot Farm.
CEO Steve Curwood added: “The chairman’s significant investment into the training ground is already reaping benefit. The process was underway a few months ago to get the infrastructure and player recruitment right for the academy. Building links like this one can only be a win-win situation for everyone concerned.”