Super League Academies stronger than ever
First Utility Super League club Academies are performing at an all-time high, results published in the annual Academy Accreditation assessments for 2014 show.
The independent assessments, which are now in their fourth year of operation, show another healthy increase in the quality of the player supply for both the Super League and England programmes at all levels.
Since 2007, club Academies have produced seven full England international players and 31 England Knights players.
In that time, 205 players have progressed from club Academies to make their Super League debut, with 33 percent of these having already made more than 30 appearance in the sport’s elite competition.
RFL National Player Development Manager Paul Medley said: “We are happy with the results of the Academy assessments as they demonstrate a continuing improvement over a significant period.
“The Academies are judged by an independent panel who take into account a number of factors throughout the assessment process, ranging from the improvements in facilities and systems to the strategy and vision of individual Academies.
“Player welfare and educational options open to young players are also looked at – 320 young players now have a qualification in the Advanced Apprenticeship in Sporting Excellence, for example.
“We are growing a strong foundation for the future of our sport, things are moving in a positive direction and we are very pleased with the improvements made on last year’s assessments.
“Clubs are putting a strong focus on developing young talent through their own ranks, and this has led to Super League developing some of the best facilities in the world.
“To have 38 players since 2007 going on to earn international honours is a fantastic achievement: there is a lot of hard work that goes on behind the scenes that not many people know about.
“I would like to congratulate all clubs and their hard working staff for their efforts, which sometimes go unrecognised.”
The full Academy Accreditation 2014 assessments are available to view by clicking here