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Tottenham introducing development programme to Wellington college to develop NZ's future football stars

English Premier League club Tottenham Hotspur will help grow some of New Zealand's future football stars after announcing a development programme with a Wellington secondary school.

Ria Percival playing for Tottenham Hotspur. Source: Getty

Tottenham confirmed this morning they are launching their elite player development programme at Scots College - a five-year programme which will have the English club's coaching introduced to young Kiwi footballers.

"Our coaches will work with selected male and female players at Scots College and ensure a clear player development pathway through integration with local football federations," Tottenham said in a statement.

"Alongside player development, the club will run a coach education programme to maintain excellence in footballing standards and best practice, with tailored workshops for both elite and grassroots coaches in the region, collaborating with local clubs, school partners and football federations."

The model for the programme has already been used by the club elsewhere globally, including in the US, Hong Kong and Australia.

Tottenham already have some Kiwi influence in their clubroom though with longtime Football Fern Ria Percival currently playing for the women's team.

Percival said she will engage with the programme and players involved to provide both advice and inspiration.

“It’s great to hear the club are partnering with a school in New Zealand and our incredible coaches will be working with and helping to develop male and female players from my home country.”

Scots College headmaster Graeme Yule said the programme was an exciting prospect for students.

“With the College’s move to co-education and the introduction of girls to our football club, this partnership provides additional pathway options for these young female and male players and further support and development for our coaching team.”

Due to Covid-19, the first year of the programme - 2021 - will be delivered through online sessions but after that, Tottenham plan to send their coaches to Scots College for 12 weeks a year.