Your Champions: Mold football coach Lee Starkey nominated for sport award
A HARD-WORKING football coach has been nominated for a Trinity Mirror/ScottishPower Your Champions award, in the sport category.
Lee Starkey, 40, of Mold, has been nominated by Chronicle sport reporter Alec Doyle for his work with young people at the Airbus Football Academy.
“He is a hard-working, popular coach who has helped many youngsters take one step closer to their dream of a career in professional football,” said Alec.
“He maintains and expects high standards but ensures that barriers such as ability to pay never stand in the way of a talented youngster’s opportunity.
“His key achievement is not however providing players with the hope they may get to play for a Premiership youth academy, it is in helping players make the most of their ability, whatever level is right for them, and allowing them to enjoy the game to their fullest, a fact highlighted by Airbus U14s winning the FW Academy Cup last season.”
Lee has been training aspiring footballers, both boys and girls, at the Airbus Academy for five years.
Each week he trains 90 young people aged seven-19.
“I like giving the kids in the area the opportunity to progress to a higher level and getting them on the pitch,” said Lee.
“We’re the cheapest academy around and we’ve had the highest number of applications and players this year than we’ve ever had.
“Being part of the Academy gives the young people a sense of self-esteem, we want them to be proud of the academy.
“Last week the goalkeeper from the under-14s team signed a two-year contract with Manchester United, which we’re all very pleased with.”