Come and join us at SJP for Barnet visitEXETER CITY will play host to scouts from Exeter and the surrounding district at this Friday’s home match against Barnet.
There are an expected 226 scouts coming to watch City take on Barnet at St James Park this weekend. Every scout gets a free goody bag which contains a Roar Junior Grecians programme, sweets, a future free ground tour and lots more!
The scouts also get a list of membership benefits in the goody bag for when they sign up to the club. The Grecians hold a ‘Train with the Players Day’, which allows scouts to train with the City pros and get a real insight into how they play and train up close and personal.
This is not the first time that the club have welcomed large numbers of youngsters to take in the action at St James Park.
Twenty years ago, Exeter City supporters were predominantly males over the age of fifteen. As the years have progressed City and football in general have taken on more of a family vibe, where a healthy age and gender diversity between supporters has developed.
Club chairman Julian Tagg was in the vanguard of these changes. Julian was a supporter of the Grecians from the young age of nine, and since then has strived to make the club a better environment for all who visit. Julian played and coached the reserve team of Exeter City until any hopes of being a professional footballer were eradicated thanks to an untimely knee injury at the age of 23.
He went on to coach City’s first Under-12s side, which included the likes of Dean Moxey. When the Supporters’ Trust became the main shareholder of the club, Tagg stepped up as vice-chairman and insisted the youth programme was not closed following the administration of 2003.
This was a proposal which would lead to the likes of former Grecian and now Blackburn’s on-loan Swansea City midfielder Matt Grimes coming through the City system and generating the club a substantial amount of profit on his departure to Swansea in 2015.
In order to encourage a new audience, free tickets have been distributed to schools to come and watch the Grecians in action on match-days. This incentive was intended to get more young people involved in sport, and Julian also looked at sport in the community (later to become the FITC) and put on training sessions for young footballers to come and possibly have a chance at progressing into the academy team, or beyond.
Tagg was appointed executive director in autumn 2013 after a two-year endorsement as acting chief executive. The above initiatives have continued to prove a great success, with the club seeing its membership tripled from last year.
We hope the scouts enjoy their experience at St James Park this weekend!