Crystal Palace Football Club has successfully acquired a long-term lease for its current Academy base in Beckenham, which will last for at least 75 years.
Under the term of the agreement, the club will take control of the site whilst the current tenant, Goals Beckenham North, will leave within a year and consolidate operations at its Elmers End location in the town.
The Crystal Palace Academy has a well-earned reputation for producing outstanding footballers, including current first-team stars Wilfried Zaha and Aaron Wan-Bissaka, as well as Welsh international Jonny Williams, who played a major part in Palace’s 2013 promotion season. Other Academy products who have starred in the Premier League include Victor Moses, Nathaniel Clyne, Ben Watson and Wayne Routledge.
Having secured the site, the club intends to invest in the facilities and to build on the success of its current youth teams – the Under 18 and Under 23 sides both won their Professional Development League divisions last season and the Under 15 team reached the regional Floodlit Cup Final. In all, the Academy runs ten teams from the Under 9 age group upwards and has 40 scouts working to find the best young talent.
Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish said: “This is an important moment for the club and I am delighted that we now have an opportunity to invest in the long-term future of our Academy. We know that there is a wealth of raw talent in south London and we want to ensure that the best young players are playing here and developing their careers at Crystal Palace.
"We have a fantastic team of Academy coaches, who are steeped in the history of the club, and are achieving great results, despite having to operate in a challenging physical environment. Upgrading the site will give our coaches and young players the facilities they deserve and we are thrilled that we can achieve this whilst remaining in the heart of Bromley and on a site that is adjacent to our training ground."
The chairman added: "I want to thank all those who have helped us develop our vision for the site, including the team at Goals.”
Stay tuned to cpfc.co.uk for all news relating to the Palace Academy.