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Norwich City’s John Ruddy meets Prince William and Kate Middleton at England’s new training camp St George’s Park

14:12 09 October 2012

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge pose for a photograph with Norwich City

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge pose for a photograph with Norwich City's John Ruddy and the rest of the England squad during the official launch of The Football Association's National Football Centre at St George's Park in Burton-upon-Trent.

Norwich City’s John Ruddy was part of the England squad that took part in the first open training session at the Football Association’s magnificent new £100m St George’s Park complex at Burton.

Norwich City's John Ruddy with The Duke of Cambridge.Norwich City's John Ruddy with The Duke of Cambridge.

After training the England players were involved in a meet and greet with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge - Prince William and Kate Middleton.

Trevor Brooking, the FA director of football development, explained a long-term aim of St George’s Park was to get England playing like world champions Spain.

“I’d like to see the quality of grass-roots football improve,” he told Sky Sports News.

“The key to the long term at the elite level is to make sure the grass-roots level comes up, because then our choice, the club’s choice in the academies, is going to be so much better and they’ll be able to deal with the game of football that we see (from) Barcelona and Spain. We’ve got to get them playing the same game.

“What we need to get is instead of 35% (of English players) playing every week in the Premier League, it’s got to be 45, 55, 65, on merit, and then 75%, because that’s what Spain are at the moment, I think the senior coach of England then has got every right to be challenging and that’s what we would expect at that stage.

“But 10 years I think is a realistic time scale for that.”

David Sheepshanks, chairman of St George’s Park, revealed his hope that the centre will deliver success for the England team from 2020 onwards.

Sheepshanks told BBC Radio 5 Live: “This place is a place to inspire young people and young coaches to invest in themselves and go beyond just getting the badge.

“The teachers of the game have the defining influence. We are investing in the teachers so that we can get ahead of what they are doing in France and Spain.

“This is a deliberately long-term view. Really it is the investment in coaches that is crucial and from 2020 onwards we will have winning England teams.”


  • I heard that she was asked to unveil the new ornamental knockers on the front door.

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    Swiss Canary

    Thursday, October 11, 2012

  • Yes Timbo, it must have been the cold weather?

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    Wednesday, October 10, 2012

  • NEWSFLASH: The English FA are issuing a pair of small commemorative jugs in honour of Kate's visit .....

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, October 9, 2012

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