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Collins on the City production line

By Ian Appleyard | 3rd July 2018

Sam Collins is aiming to maintain and develop City's production line of young talent in his new role as Youth Team Manager.

Collins, who was previously employed as Professional Development Coach at Bradford City, played nearly 600 games for clubs including Huddersfield Town, Bury, Port Vale, Hull City, and Hartlepool United during a career spanning two decades.

He now intends to help players from City's Academy forge their own careers in the professional game which should also strengthen the club's first team squad.

"I am really excited and looking forward to my new role," he said. "The end product is getting young players coming through into the first team. That's something that, over the years, York City have always done.

"It's important that we try to align what we are doing with what the first team is doing in terms of style of play. We will take things from what they do and will try and add it to what we do.

"It's not always necessarily what you do 'on-the-pitch', it's the little things you do 'off-the-pitch'. I will be making sure my lads are aware of what it actually takes to become a professional football player."

Ryan Edmondson (Leeds United), Gabby McGill (Middlesbrough), Sam Fielding (Barnsley), and Ben Godfrey (Norwich City) are among the players who have been snapped up from City's Academy in recent years.

Collins, who was born in Pontefract, began his footballing career in the mid-1990s with Huddersfield.

"Back in the old days, when I first started, it was ridiculous, the amount of work you had to 'off-the-field' before you got on the grass," he recalled. "But, in modern times, it's a lot more in the players' favour. It's all about their development as a football player.

"However, I do still think it's important that they have that discipline and professionalism off-the-field as, eventually, it will rub off on what they do on it," he stressed. 

"This is a good football club with a lot of good infrastructure already in place," he said. "The training ground is fantastic and these younger players have got to buy into that.  If they do, and we do the right work with them, over the next couple of years, hopefully, we can get them into the first team."

Watch the full interview with Sam Collins by clicking the link below:

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