Nottingham Forest have announced that their recent Academy auditing process was a success.The Reds will continue to operate at Category 2 level after passing the audit, an outcome Academy operations manager Craig Heiden is delighted with.
He said: “It’s not easy to get Category 2 status – it takes a lot of hard, quality work. This news enables us to preserve our reputation as a really good club for young footballers to come to.
“If we want to attract the best young talent we have to keep taking steps in the right direction, something we have done very well this year.
“This result has given us a good foundation from which to push for Category 1 status over the next few years. We have been given an action plan which outlines a number of mandatory fields we need to tick off if we are to make the step up.”
The achievement comes after months of hard work from Academy staff, and Heiden was quick to praise everyone involved.
He said: “A lot of effort has gone in over the course of the year and we came out of the audit confident of hitting our target of achieving Category 2 status.
“Gary Brazil worked tirelessly and deserves a lot of credit for what has been achieved. After speaking to him earlier he is delighted with the result and is ready to push on next season.
“Billy Davies and his first team staff have been very open and helpful throughout the process – they’ve been great.
“Every single person involved has been fantastic and the whole thing has brought everybody together. All of our departments went through three-hour meetings prior to the audit which allowed everyone to see the hard work that goes on in other areas of the Academy – from sports science to recruitment and from coaching to performance analysis.
“The audit result has been at the back of all our minds and we haven’t really been able to relax until now. We’re all very pleased but nobody is perfect – everyone has things to work on. But for now everyone involved deserves a well-earned break.
“It’s a great way to end a promising year and we’re all looking forward to starting again at the beginning of July.”
For an insight into some of the feedback received from the audit, click here.