Portsmouth - Pompey announce link-up with Home Farm
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Pompey announce link-up with Home Farm

Pompey have today announced another new, and potentially very exciting and lucrative link-up with another club!

Having already established a link to Belgian side Zulte Waregem Pompey have now agreed a 3-year deal with Irish club Home Farm, a deal that will see the club fund their youth development for players aged 9-18, with the best of them then linking up with Pompey's academy at the age of 16.

Home Farm have a fantastic record of producing top-class footballers and have produced 60 Irish internationals over the years with former Leeds international trio Ian Harte, Stephen McPhail and Gary Kelly, along with former Liverpool and Ireland captain Ronnie Whelan and another former international captain Kenny Cunningham being some of the more recent names to come through the club.

Paul Hart, who heads our youth development programme and is of course the current caretaker manager at Fratton, has had close ties to Home Farm in the past during his time with Leeds and Forest and is delighted with this link-up, telling the Pompey Site: 'this is a significant step for us in widening our network in the search for young talent.

'Home Farm FC has consistently produced young boys of a high standard and I worked closely with them when I was at both Leeds United and Nottingham Forest.

'They have an excellent set-up and with our resources and expertise we will be working together to improve that even further.

'Alongside our relationship in Belgium with Zulte-Waregem and work we are doing in Australia, this is providing the club with an excellent base to bring young players through and, hopefully, eventually into the first-team environment.

'You cannot underestimate how important it is to put the right processes in place to produce your own talent.

'The best team in the world, Manchester United, have an excellent youth set-up and can see the value in producing their own.'

Home Farm chairman John Lyon added: 'we are very excited about our new alliance with Portsmouth Football Club. Home Farm have a good history of providing players for the professional game and we can only see this going from strength to strength in the future.

'Every lad who joins the club dreams of becoming a professional player and our job is to assist in every way to make that dream come true.

'Portsmouth Football Club have a similar youth development policy as ourselves, encouraging good football with the emphasis on good technical ability.

'The support we receive from Portsmouth will enable us to expand our academies and provide quality coaching for all our players.

'Portsmouth have already agreed to sign Carl Walsh from our under-16s and have been impressed with several other lads who have been across with them.'

This is another fantastic piece of news for Pompey, and leaves me to believe, even more so, that our longer-term future is going to be a bright one - we have plenty of talented youngsters already on the clubs books, and this gives us the chance to bring in even more!

This is also another example of the wonderful job that Hart is doing with the youngsters at Pompey, and for me another reason why his long-term future is much more vital to the academy set-up than a role as 1st team manager - for the immediate future that is fine, even until the summer, but then we must bring in someone else and allow him to get back to the post where I feel he will best serve us...


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The Journalist

Writer: pompeyrug Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday February 23 2009

Time: 1:30PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
This is good news and shows the club is still looking forwards rather than fire fighting. As soon as I saw the headline I thought I had a chance to look into the history of Home Farm and then realised the Official Site had done it already!! Still Toast will have a look and see if we can any interesting from our Irish correspondent - whoever he is!!
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 13:38:00

Excellent news -I live in Dublin & Home Farm are legendary here for youth development from an early age.. Heres their website: http://www.homefarmfc.ie/
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 13:49:00

Phew - for a second there I thought we were going to sign Marlon Dingle on a free
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 14:04:00

Great news for the club, good to see we're thinking properly about the future. I must say when I saw the headline I had fears of us being sponsored by some cheap and nasty frozen food supermarket...
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 15:19:00

haha Gino and stooH, i agree, he is better suited to the youth team, and should stay doing a brilliant job there. it is good that we are helping out smaller, and less well knowm clubs.
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 15:54:00

All good news, just need to nip in before Man U get the cream of Irish talent, always seems to end up there
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 17:51:00

Gino - I thought exactly the same thing ... Maybe we watch too many soaps ! .. Sign a player already I see.. a young lad called Eric Pollard..
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 19:47:00

whoops sorry ... should read .... Carl Walsh ... he's 16 and ginger
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 19:48:00

Coo, we don't hang around do we! Straight in there snapping up the talent.
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 19:52:00

can only be a good thing... can't it?
Report Abuse
23/02/2009 23:03:00

geez, what work are they doing in Australia? I never heard about this ;p
Report Abuse
24/02/2009 07:12:00

further forward thinking from pompey - who realise that youth development is a very, very important thing and something that we need to be doing...
i do not like going back to 'him' and talking about jamie's dad again, and atho in the short-term retaining him would have been the best thing to do, in the longer-term we will benefit as 'youth development' isnt something that he was much interested in, he saw the immediate future and bringing in players as the way to do this, using youngsters wasnt very much in his thinking - despite the fact that he did this at west ham, spending money for that instant fix was more along his lines...
another fine link-up, with a club with a genuine histroy of producing top talent - fingers crossed we can reap some rewards over this 3-years, or more...
Report Abuse
24/02/2009 07:56:00

This does show forward thinking which has got to be good for the club. Without vision there is no future. In such a competitive game, those who invest in up and coming talent should be the ones who prosper. There are no guarantees of coarse but this does feel like a very positive move..
Report Abuse
24/02/2009 08:55:00

Must be something good in it for the future for Pompey. We can't always get quick fixes & like others do need some fresh new faces from time to time.
Report Abuse
24/02/2009 22:24:00

Home Farm - it sounds like Porkie Pies to me.
Report Abuse
01/03/2009 11:12:00


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