Everton FA Cup winning hero Joe Parkinson is enjoying his role back with the club.
His move caught many by surprise after two successful years as assistant manager at Hartlepool United. But the 50-year-old said the time was right for a return to Merseyside and has quickly settled into his new role as head coach at Everton Football College.
The sixth-form initiative is a pathway for some to earn scholarships in the USA and, with a number of students being talented footballers released from academy setups, gives them a chance to work towards academic qualifications while still receiving coaching that has helped graduates find a way back into the game.
Parkinson told the Liverpool Echo: “We really want to move it forwards and create a strong link with Everton, we are part of the club’s identity.
“I was brought in to help develop the coaching on the different sites and strengthen the football side of the college, together with the existing staff, who are brilliant. We make sure every individual receives tailored attention, on the training field and in the classroom, and is rewarded for their hard work in both areas.
“My first few months have been a dream. I already knew some of the staff, which helped me, and they have made me feel so welcome. The attitude of everyone is great, we all work hard and all want to keep improving. The college is great and you can see how, after just a short time, students change and grow. Whatever pathway they take, in football or elsewhere, they are picking up skills that could help them be successful.”
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