Sheffield Wednesday have welcomed two unnamed Manchester United youngsters to Middlewood Road this week as part of the Premier League giants’ innovative new Pro Experience program.
The purpose of the initiative is to give a number of United’s Professional Development Phase (Under-17 to Under-23) players training time with English Football League clubs in short bursts.
The program also provides young people with an ideal platform to prove themselves in front of potential lending movements in the future.
Wednesday hopes to see a long-term benefit from the pairing. Not only is it likely that it will strengthen their ties to United, but it could lead to some of the Red Devils’ top chances going to Hillsborough to speed up their football education.
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United academy head Nick Cox said: “This program represents an excellent development opportunity for our players. At the academy, we always strive to be innovative in order to provide the best experiences for all our boys.
“The opportunity enables players to learn new behaviors and witness firsthand to the standards of a first team environment. We know they will return to Carrington with a renewed sense of purpose that will benefit the individual and the wider training group.
“Justin Cochrane has been crucial in establishing this initiative, it is thanks to a number of fantastic relationships that we have been able to establish a really exciting experience for the group Professional Development Phase.
“We would like to thank S heffield Wednesday for their ongoing support and look forward to seeing the many benefits this program will bring to our players both on and off the field.”
The purpose of the work experience stints is to give players a first-hand experience of the training “standards and situations” that come in the build-up to important matches.
An owl statement read: “Players will get a real taste of the Football League environment and enjoy different periods with clubs that differ from a formal loan move, and they experience training standards and situations that come in the build-up to important matches on their own.”