Academy launched

ON TARGET: Linsdsay Johnson former Sixth Form College student launches new girls football development centre.
ON TARGET: Linsdsay Johnson former Sixth Form College student launches new girls football development centre.
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AN international footballer took time out of her busy schedule to launch her very own new academy for girls.

Lindsay Johnson launched the football academy at Hartlepool Sixth Form College, in Blakelock Road.

Fifteen teenagers, aged between 14 and 16, took part in the first taster coaching sessions at the Lindsay Johnson Football Academy for Girls.

The 31-year-old Everton and England centre half, who has been capped 43 times for her country, said she is “honoured” that staff at her former college asked her to be part of the programme.

The academy will provide a “comprehensive coaching and performance” programme for female footballers as part of their college timetable.

Members of the academy will receive coaching on a daily basis, conditioning and fitness work, nutritional advice and game related analysis as part of their weekly studies.

Ben Robinson, director of sport and enrichment said: “The launch event was fantastic and we had 15 girls at the session.

“The girls, who were in Year 10 and 11, came from Hartlepool, Norton and the Billingham area.

“Lindsay spent an hour-and-a-half putting the girls through their paces, including long and short passing exercises.

“They all absolutely loved it and I think Lindsay has really inspired them.

“They can see that a girl from Hartlepool has gone to the top of her profession and they took a lot from that.”

Lindsay, who will lead up to four training sessions over the next year, previously told the Mail: “I am honoured that the college has asked me to be a part of a great programme.”

The England international also signed autographs and presented the college with a signed England shirt.

For more information about the academy call the college on (01429) 294444.