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20 Sep 2012 NEWCASTLE BOSS GOES BACK TO HIS ROOTS
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew is supporting the recently announced Budweiser Club Futures programme that will see £1m invested into grassroots football over the next two seasons.
Pardew’s role as ambassador for this UK-wide initiative launched by The FA and Budweiser will see the Magpies boss lead the programme by encouraging clubs to participate and also be part of the judging panel which decides the eight winners in the first season.
Pardew has the perfect credentials to be the face of this grassroots football initiative having started his career as a part-time, non-league player at Whyteleafe and Epsom & Ewell, whilst working as a glazier. His non-league days continued with spells at Corinthian Casuals, Dulwich Hamlet and Yeovil Town.
The Budweiser Club Futures programme will give sixteen £50k grants to teams across steps 5-7 of the English Football Pyramid split across two seasons, as part of Budweiser’s FA Cup sponsorship. Within each season, one of the chosen eight clubs will win an additional £100,000 super grant – as voted by football fans from early next year through the official FA Cup and Budweiser UK Facebook pages.
Pardew said: “Having started my career in non-league football I know just how important the grassroots level of the game is. These sorts of clubs are a great asset for the local community as much as the players. This is a massive opportunity for teams to help themselves move forwards and become more sustainable. It’s great to be part of such a valuable programme that’s investing in clubs at this level. I’m really hoping that as many clubs as possible apply over the next two seasons.”
Budweiser European Marketing Director, Iain Newell, said: “Alan Pardew knows the importance of non-league clubs to the future of the game and within local communities, so to have him on board with the programme is great. He’ll have a great impact in raising awareness of the programme, to help get clubs up and down the country involved and his background in grassroots football makes him the ideal ambassador to sit on the judging panel.”