Derek is optimistic for Cherries' future
DEREK Old has left his post as centre of excellence manager at AFC Bournemouth after eight years with the club. Old, together with head of youth Joe Roach, has been responsible for unearthing some of Cherries most prized assets. Since being brought in by Roach in 2001, Old has played a major part in discovering the likes of Sam Vokes, Brett Pitman, Joe Partington and Josh McQuoid. He has also helped nurture the talents of Jayden Stockley, Danny Ings and Dan Thomas, who all made their first-team debuts in the Johnstones Paint Trophy defeat at Northampton. Old told the Daily Echo: I have thoroughly enjoyed my time with the club and have been tremendously enthusiastic about the number of players who have come through. Im very pleased and know there will be more to come. Hopefully, once the new owners have stabilised the club financially then the centre can step forward as well. Im very optimistic the club can have a good future. Asked whether he felt it would become harder for clubs like Cherries to attract players with the potential of Vokes and Pitman in the future, Old replied: No, I dont think it will be. Naturally, all the players want to go to the big clubs with academies. But if their parents are sensible, they can see that clubs like ours can play an important part in youth development. If they make the grade here then they will have the same chance as someone like Sam who moved on to bigger and better things. Thats the way we always talked to people in the past. Jason Blake is stepping up to centre of excellence manager with former Cherries star Matt Holmes set to become technical development officer for the clubs seven to 11 age groups.
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