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Monday, July 15, 2024

Repton School Welcomes Luke Webb as Technical Director of Football

In autumn 2023, Repton School (Derbyshire) will welcome a new technical director of football to its roster of specialist coaching staff. Coach and former professional footballer Luke Webb will bring his passion for education and his sporting experience to Repton’s already impressive football provision.

One of the School’s six focus sports, football at Repton caters to all pupils, some of whom have gone on to launch footballing careers at the local and Premier League levels.

Webb will help raise Repton’s football programme to the next level and ensure pupils continue to receive personalised support as they grow as players.

Webb’s Football and Coaching Background

At the start of the 2023/24 academic year, Webb will join Repton School from Bradfield College in Berkshire. Webb spent the last 14 years developing a first-class football programme at Bradfield College that has drawn national acclaim.

He has also lent his coaching skills to Bloomsbury Futsal where, as an assistant coach, he regularly mentors a team of international players.

Before his coaching career, Webb started as an apprentice footballer in Arsenal Football Club’s (FC) youth academy. He then played professional football for Coventry City FC in the English Football League (EFL) Championship (the second-highest tier of the English football pyramid) and Hereford United FC.

Webb’s experience of football at the professional and grassroots level and his passion for developing individuals through the game make him ideally placed to become Repton’s new technical director of football.

Uniting Football and Personal Development

Webb brings his extensive experience of the nuanced interplay between football and people development to his new position with the School.

For Webb, football and education are “one and the same.” However, he explains that placing football within the field of education and understanding the “complementary nature” between the two requires balance, knowledge, and extensive experience.

Webb adds that it takes even greater skill to integrate football and education to facilitate elite development for pupils while remaining true to an institution’s values.  The skilled coach looks forward to collaborating with Repton’s community of like-minded individuals as they strive for excellence both in football and education.

Advancing Repton’s Football Programme

Repton’s Headmaster Mark Semmence has praised Webb, calling the coach an “inspirational leader” whose ambitious plans will advance the School’s football provision and elevate support for all pupils who play football, not just those who achieve the highest levels of performance.

Semmence adds that Webb has an enduring record of football coaching excellence and people development, and the School is excited to welcome him to the Repton family in autumn.

Repton School’s Football Programme

Repton has a strong national football reputation, and several pupils have left the School to launch professional footballing careers. One notable Repton alumnus is Premier League footballer Will Hughes, who has played for Derby County and Watford and is now a midfielder for Crystal Palace.

Repton’s teams have recently secured the School a clutch of trophies.

Repton’s boys’ football teams have won:

  • The England Schools’ Football Association (ESFA) U18 cup twice.
  • The Independent Schools Football Association (ISFA) sixes twice.
  • The Hudl Independent Schools’ League three times.
  • The Barry Burns ISFA Northern 8s six times.

Repton’s girls’ football teams have won the ISFA:

  • U18 National 7-a-side competition.
  • U18 Midlands League four times in five editions.
  • U15 Northern 7-a-side.

Led by current  Director of Football and Assistant Head of Sport Matt Carrington, the School’s football programme caters to Reptonians of all skill levels, from pupils who train with professional clubs’ youth teams to those who enjoy the competitive fun of Repton’s internal House League.

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Girls’ Football at Repton School

Exemplified by the triumph of the England women’s team in the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022, women’s football has recently experienced a popularity surge and is one of the quickest-growing UK sports.

Though football has long been the mainstay of boys’ sports in UK schools, girls have been playing football at Repton since the 2021/22 season.

Professional footballer Molly Holder is the girls’ football coach at Repton and is currently working towards her UEFA B coaching qualification (Repton is committed to upskilling the staff and coaches who lead training sessions through ongoing professional development).

Holder plays in the FA Women’s National League North — having recently transferred to Stoke City from Middlesbrough — and brings the insight of a current league player to girls’ football at Repton.

Holder has experience coaching U12s and U16s at the Regional Talent Club and understands the full youth development journey. She is eager to expand Repton’s girls’ teams and progress the Girls’ first XI in top-tier competitions.

Two of Repton’s 2022 leavers played for Burton Albion U18s, with another signing for a season with Derby County Women’s U18s. One talented pupil who previously played with Repton’s boys’ U15s is now looking to progress to a local club.

For Holder, fostering respect for wider women’s football is paramount to ensuring the game remains a source of fulfilment and pride for Repton’s female players once they leave school.

About Repton School

Many talented young athletes and their families seek out Derbyshire’s Repton School. The independent co-educational day and boarding school offers world-class coaching and facilities to help pupils maximise their sporting ability and ambition.

While Repton has the provisions to take pupils with athletic potential towards their goals, the School’s sporting ethos champions healthy participation for all. Repton values the teamwork, leadership skills, resilience, and dedication that participation in sport can foster in pupils, bringing a sense of achievement as individuals and collectively.

Reptonians enjoy sport and an array of traditional and contemporary subjects as part of a balanced and challenging curriculum. A Repton education nurtures pupils as they learn, play, and grow, leaving the School as rounded and multi-faceted citizens of the world.

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