Football experts from Burnley FC, Manchester United, and Liverpool FC to speak at Burnley College's free Talking Sports series

Andy Payton - former Burnley FC professional footballer, UEFA A qualified coach, and one of the inspirational leaders of the successful Academy of Sport - at Burnley College.
Andy Payton - former Burnley FC professional footballer, UEFA A qualified coach, and one of the inspirational leaders of the successful Academy of Sport - at Burnley College.
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Burnley College is set to welcome some of the UK's most renowned football experts for their free Talking Sports series focusing on the world of professional sport, offering unique insight into the behind-the-scenes operations at clubs including Burnley FC, Liverpool, and Manchester United.


Aiming to provide a glimpse into the working lives of professional athletes plying their trade in the upper echelons of English football, the six speakers include a UEFA-qualified coach, a sports agent, an academy coach, a sports nutritionist, and a sports psychologist, all of whom work with professional clubs at the highest levels of football in the country.

Arranged to give as rounded an insight into the world of professional sport as possible, each speaker will offer a different perspective on the industry and on what it takes for the North West’s top athletes to maintain their optimum performance and for football clubs to achieve top results.

Former Burnley star Andy Payton - now a UEFA A Qualified Coach, a leader at the Academy of Sport at Burnley College Sixth Form Centre, and a Radio Lancashire commentator - will kick off proceedings, followed by UEFA Registered Sports Agent and partner at sports management firm DRN Sports Nick Cassidy, and Matthew Bebbington, Academy Coach for Wigan Athletic and International Academy Coach for Liverpool FC.

Accrington Stanley FC Managing Director and former Chief Executive of the Lancashire Football Association David Burgess will be the fourth speaker, followed by Crewe Alexandra's sports nutritionist Liam Brown and David Horrocks, a sports psychologist in elite performance who has worked with UEFA and Manchester United and who lectures at some of the UK's top universities.

“We’re proud to be establishing Burnley as a real centre of excellence for sport, whether you’re looking for an option for post-GCSE or degree level study or are already performing at a high level in your chosen sport and want to take advantage of expert professional guidance in our Academy of Sport of Elite Athlete programmes," said Alyson Andrews, Commercial Director of Burnley College.

"Our facilities are second to none: we have Sports Performance with the very latest high-tech equipment, as well as UEFA standard outdoor pitches and an award-winning on-site fitness centre, Fitness Evolution," Alyson added. “We hope that everyone with a love of professional sport will put the Talking Sports events at College in their calendar and come along to enjoy what promise to be a fascinating series of talks and social events."

With every talk taking place at the college on Princess Way at 7pm on various Thursday evenings across May and June, there will also be the chance to ask questions, enjoy refreshments, and network with those considering a career in professional sport. The exact dates are as follows:

16 May - Andy Payton: Andy will be discussing the highs and lows of his career in professional football and his move into the rewarding world of coaching. At this first event in the Talking Sport series, guests can enjoy their first drink free.

23 May - Nick Cassidy: We will hear from Nick about his successful career in this competitive industry, what brought him into this fascinating field, and the reality of working with professionals at the very highest levels.

6 June - Matthew Bebbington: Matthew will give an insight into his career and how he came to hold these top positions, as well as how coaching has helped his own personal and professional development.

13 June - David Burgess: We will hear from David about his career at the very heart of local football, how he forged his career in professional sport, and his key tips for success in this industry.

20 June - Liam Brown: Liam will give an insight into the vital role that nutrition plays in an athlete’s performance, explaining his fascination for this subject which combines science and sport skills, as well as charting his career path and giving top tips for those keen to follow in his footsteps.

27 June – David Horrocks: In this final talk, David will outline his exceptional career and share highlights of his journey, explain what brought him into this fascinating field, and offer his top tips for success.

For more information, head to www.burnley.ac.uk/events, call 01282 7333333, or email s.services@burnley.ac.uk.