Shadow Scholarship | Bruce Dyer Coaching Masterclass

Barnsley Football Club legend Bruce Dyer has delivered a coaching masterclass to some of the Reds’ Shadow Scholars ahead of this Thursday’s National Football Youth League Cup Final.

On Thursday afternoon, Mark Tinker’s side will travel to Sheffield Wednesday’s Hillsborough Stadium, hoping to round off a fantastic inaugural year of the programme by beating Carlisle United and lifting silverware in the NFYL’s showpiece game.

Throughout this year, the unique relationship between Reds in the Community and Barnsley FC has been showcased with the players training with the Academy’s U18’s and U23’s on a weekly basis.

On top of that, Education Ambassador Kieffer Moore and fellow first-teamer Jordan Green have also taken part in a Q&A session with the Shadow Scholars to provide some extra inspiration.

Demonstrating the support of Reds in the Community from Barnsley players past and present, Bruce worked with Jack Bennett, Dom Claxton, Lewis French, Luke Jackson, Essa N’Dow and Jake Vigrass last week.

Bruce, who had been involved with the round two draw of the NFYL Cup earlier in the season, spoke about how much he enjoyed giving up his time to help the young players.

He said: “Creating space in tight areas to get a shot off on goal, pinning defenders, making half a yard in the box, hitting the target – I’ve just been showing the guys some of the things I’ve learned over the years. I really get a lot out of working with small groups, especially strikers. There was some really good finishes, technique and strong powerful runs. It was a really enjoyable session. You can’t beat experience, knowledge is powerful. Not just because it is me, I think that if you’ve got any professional giving young players information, it’s going to be beneficial. I love Barnsley, love the club and love the area so to be able to contribute and do my bit to help young players progress is a dream.”

Education Lead Player Development coach Mark, who also coaches the NFYL All-Star team, spoke about how valuable it was for his players to learn from a proven striker.

He added: “It’s fantastic to get the support of a club legend such as Bruce. It was a coaching masterclass. With the detail he went into, it was priceless. At the same age as what these guys are, he had a £1m price tag on him and there’s a reason for that. He was talking about things that only a top-level striker, who played against top-level defenders, would be able to talk about. I know that our players will learn from it and hopefully put it into practice in the final. He is a club legend and we’re very grateful for him to give up his time for our Shadow Scholarship programme.”