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Sunderland AFC is delighted to announce the appointment of Mike Dodds as the club’s Head of Individual Player Development (PDP).

Taking on a newly created role at the Academy of Light, Dodds will focus on personalised development across the club’s Under-18s and Under-23s, identifying and implementing bespoke programmes for each individual player based on their unique requirements.

Dodds has worked in youth development within the EFL for over a decade, holding posts at Coventry City and Birmingham City, whilst also supporting the Football Association by presenting on various courses.

Head of Coaching Stuart English said: “Mike has a fantastic enthusiasm for player development. He’s incredibly well respected and naturally had opportunities elsewhere, so it is a great endorsement of what we are doing that he felt this was the right place for him. In addition to the teams, his focus will be on the individual aspects of our coaching programme across the Under-18s and Under-23s, ensuring that each player receives an optimised and personalised development programme. We believe he will be a valuable addition to our existing backroom team and we are delighted to welcome him to Sunderland AFC.”

Dodds worked for the Blues for 12 years in a variety of Academy roles, before leaving last month. During his time at Birmingham he worked with Sunderland’s Sporting Director Kristjaan Speakman and in fact replaced him as Academy Manager last December following his move to the Stadium of Light.

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