Date: 29th March 2012 at 6:37pm
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West Bromwich Albion have announced plans to spend up to £2.5m on our training facilities, with a further £3m to be spent annually in the development of our 9-21 year old players, in an effort to secure ‘Category 1 Academy’ status under the new Elite Player Performance Plan (EPPP).

The EPPP is being introduced in July and is Premier League led, hoping to increase the numbers of homegrown players in the top league and also to strengthen our National team.

Subject to planning permission, the facilities outlay will see the installation of a full size, floodlit, latest generation artificial pitch next to the indoor training centre. The Albion Foundation building will be completely refurbished to house changing rooms, offices for coaching staff, classrooms and a parents meeting room.

The EPPP also requires Albion to have a show pitch to stage reserve matches. This will encompass work at the training ground which will result in a designated pitch being a replica of The Hawthorns playing surface.

Speaking to wba.co.uk Sporting and Technical Director Dan Ashworth said of the investment.

‘Our efforts to achieve Category One Academy status underlines the club’s commitment to identifying and producing home grown players. We feel compelled to make this investment because we don’t want to get left behind. We have made huge strides since becoming an Academy six years ago, with several players now members of the first team squad, and this progress will hopefully gather further momentum under the EPPP.’

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