Spartans Connections Help Deliver Disability Club Status

Posted on Monday, July 21st, 2014

Spartans Football Club have been awarded The Scottish Football Association Disability Club status. This award has been granted by the SFA due to our work with players who have a disability.

The Spartans Connection team was originally created by Garry Betts taking up the position of team manager and David Hiddleston helping coach the side.

Manager Garry started off with just a few, however is delighted their numbers have continued to grow
“Spartans Connections has already exceeded our expectations. We initially arranged a 6 week trial. In our 1st week we had 6 folk turn up for the session, by the end of the course we had 12 players. I met with Dougie Samuel and agreed to continue the training every Thursday morning. We put out a call for coaches from within the academy and David came on board. Since then our squad is now up to 25 with 2 new guys who came for a trial this week. We also have 2 more coaches involved including Grant Cunningham who has been helping the team develop.”

“We’ve been to 2 national competitions in Glasgow & 2 regional competitions, we finished as runners up in East Kilbride & we won the Dumbarton Cup. We plan to enter both competitions this year. My role in Spartans Connections is becoming more administrative, organising transport & filling in forms. This year also sees the inagural National Pan-Disability League in October, we are hoping to enter 4 teams into the Leagues”

Coach David Hiddleston has loved the experience so far
“The Spartans FC Connections is for players with a disability who want to play football. Our aim is to provide a positive experience and opportunity for adults and youths (male and female) to play football.”

“I had previously coached for 10 years with Spartans, developing youth players from the 7 aside right though to 11 aside game as well as working as a full time teacher for 20 years at Edinburgh College, helping students with varying learning styles and needs.
When the opportunity came along to coach players with a disability, I jumped at the new challenge which has allowed me to extend my existing coaching skills and experience.”

“I would recommend anyone to get involved as it has been one of my most rewarding experiences in football.”

Interest in the team has already grown with 2 additional coaches now involved and they are keen to hear from anyone else looking to get involved. Anyone interested can speak to Garry at any of our Lowland League games or drop him an email.

Next Fixture

Date: Saturday 13th April
Opponent: Stranraer FC
Venue:Ainslie Park
Competition: SPFL 2
Kick off: 3.00pm

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