The Football League has today announced its first set of nominees for its annual awards ceremony, ‘The Football League Awards’.
The Awards, which recognise on and off the pitch excellence across the League’s 72 member Clubs will be celebrated at a gala bash at The Brewery, London on Sunday 11 March.
Today’s announcement includes nominations for 25 Clubs but the shortlisted individuals for many of the Player of the Year categories have yet to be made known.
Those announcements are expected within the next fortnight however, three shortlists that do hold particular resonance for young players have been announced. The Championship, League One and League Two Apprentice of the Year contenders have been made public.
In the Championship, Gael Bigirimana (Coventry City), Johnny Williams (Crystal Palace) and Jordan Obita (Reading) go head to head.
In League One, Doyle Middleton (Preston North End) will compete with England youth international Jordan Cousins (Charlton Athletic) and Matt Crooks (Huddersfield Town), while in League Two the highly rated Nick Powell (Crewe Alexandra) will face competition from Daniel Banister (Northampton Town) and Miles Storey (Swindon Town).
Skipping a few generations someone that knows more than most about youth players is Tranmere Rovers Youth Development Officer Warwick Rimmer, who finds himself on the shortlist for the Bluefin Sport Unsung Hero Award.
Rimmer who has spent 29 years at Tranmere, established the Club’s youth system in 1987. Since then he has gone on to develop players worth a total of £15 million in transfer fees, with the Club’s youth system being acclaimed as one of the best in the country.
Rimmer will battle for the Award with Barnsley’s, Norman Rimmington and Paul Bradley of Preston North End.
Richard Heaselgrave, Chief Commercial Officer at the Football League, said:
“The Football League Awards are not only a chance to celebrate the incredible football and competition played out each week in the Football League, but also the amazing work that goes on at every Club off the pitch.”
“To make these shortlists is a huge achievement especially taking into account the quality and quantity of superb entries we have received again this year across each category. I would like to wish all those nominated the best of luck on the evening.”
To find out more about the Football League Awards, and for a full list of Award categories, please visit www.FLAwards.com