Sporty pupils from two Nantwich primary schools have gained playing tips from Crewe Alexandra Football Club apprentices at football tournaments arranged through Reaseheath College.

The tournaments are part of an assessment for the apprentices, who are studying for an academic qualification at Reaseheath as part of their full time training programme with the club. The apprentices’ task is to run an introductory skills session for the pupils and then organise and officiate at a tournament.

Last week a mixed group of 26 pupils from Millfields Primary School took part in their tournament at the Crewe Alex Academy training ground adjacent to Reaseheath’s Nantwich campus.  The apprentices also ran a similar event at Highfields Academy for Year 3 pupils. Eighteen current apprentices helped to organise and coach the pupils. The pupils all received tickets to see Crewe Alexandra’s First Team in action in the recent 6-1 victory over Crawley Town.

Millfields Head Teacher Phil Whelan said: “Receiving high quality coaching from the under 18 development squad was a great experience for the children. The pupils had a lot of fun and enjoyed playing in a professional environment.”

Promising apprentice Malachi Linton, who trains with Crewe Alex First Team, said: “It was really nice to train a group of such energetic children who showed a great enthusiasm for the sport and were eager to learn. I am very grateful that Reaseheath gave me this fantastic coaching opportunity.”

Course Manager Lauren Goff explained: “Here at Reaseheath we promote skills that the apprentices can use in later life for alternative careers in professional sport such as coaching. We wanted to give them a realistic opportunity to coach, and these tournaments certainly achieved that goal.”

Reaseheath has been working in partnership with Crewe Alex for over 10 years to provide an all-round education for the club’s apprentices, who gain some of the best grades in the country.  The apprentices study at the college for a BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Sports (Performance and Excellence). Subjects for study include coaching, sports massage, analysis of sports performance and technical and tactical skills in sport.