Liverpool Academy era comes to end in Lismore
A footballing era in Lismore will come to an end this week when the Southern Cross University Football Centre closes.
The centre, which runs football programs including the Liverpool FC International Academy, had been dormant since the COVID-19 restrictions forced its suspension in March. Training had just resumed in recent weeks.
Southern Cross Vice President (Operations) Allan Morris said the University made the hard decision to close down the centre with great sadness.
“We know how fond of the centre and the Liverpool FC program many football fans are and we have seen some 1500 young Northern Rivers players and another 150 coaches enjoy its programs over the last five years,” he said.
“But a review of University operations has highlighted that in the current climate it is unsustainable for us to continue to underwrite its activities.
“The centre will close immediately, with the loss of four staff.
“So many of us across the region are feeling the effects of this downturn and Southern Cross is not immune. We, too, have to make changes.”
Mr Morris said the University would consider future uses for the Football Centre in the coming months.
Junior teams and competitions scheduled for the centre in 2020 are also cancelled.
He also thanked the centre staff for their dedication in building up the reputation and scope of the Liverpool FC International Academy.
“We had just expanded the scope of the Academy at the end of 2019 to include the Liverpool Football Excellence program but COVID-19 put an end to that. It is very regrettable,” Mr Morris said.
“Dealing with Liverpool Football Club over the last five years has been a tremendous experience and we have been honoured to be their Australian partner.”