Sutcliffe steps down from academy venture

Liam Sutcliffe pictured outside the CFC Village
Liam Sutcliffe pictured outside the CFC Village
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Liam Sutcliffe has stepped away from the day-to-day runnings of his academy venture, which ran CFC Development School Ltd.

CFC Development School Ltd endured a difficult 2016 with debts of £77k in their latest accounts, staff departures over late payment of wages and threats of legal action over unpaid refunds for a cancelled football trip.

It was part a project, legally separate from the Spireites, called the CFC Player Progression Pathway based at the CFC Village opposite the Proact Stadium on Sheffield Road.

That in turn was part of a business called the CFC International Football Academy - set up by former non-league footballer Sutcliffe and then Chesterfield FC CEO Chris Turner, now the club’s director of football.

FBT, who acquired 50 per cent of the International Academy towards the end of last year, confirmed Sutcliffe’s departure on Monday evening.

In a statement which was released via Chesterfield FC’s official club website FBT confirmed it had “agreed to acquire full control” of the project.

“FBT was delighted to be given the opportunity to partner with the Chesterfield community in developing the concept of an International Football Academy when it acquired a 50% shareholding stake in late November 2016.

“Since that time a number of quite serious issues have come to the attention of our board regarding activities that that took place as the original company and different company CFC Development Schools.

“Whilst these issues have no linkage to FBT, or the International Football Academy, we have continued to express our desire to support the International Academy and the wider community of Chesterfield where we were able to do so within our corporate authority.

“We are now assured that all matters related to the ownership and running of the previous company, CFC Development Schools, are being dealt with professionally and as such we are delighted to be able to continue our support for the present International Academy.

“Indeed we plan to take this excellent concept onto a broader and more challenging level and we firmly believe that this will result in real benefits to Chesterfield Football Club, its community and beyond.

“However in order to achieve this and in the interests of all concerned we have taken the decision with immediate effect to restructure. Liam Sutcliffe, who built the concept of the International Academy, has stepped down from his current position and his day to day responsibilities for the academy. We have agreed to acquire full control of the company.

“We would like to add however that since we have had the opportunity to showcase the football strengths of the academy to our friends in the Far east, Middle East and Africa, all have been hugely impressed with the facility and standards that exist in Chesterfield. It is an excellent facility and all these partners from abroad wish to become part of the growth and future of the concept.

“We are therefore looking forward to harnessing the positives from the academy and taking it forward on a new and innovative path.”