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Youth Team

Mark Litherland Appointed Academy Manager

11 July 2023

Youth Team

Mark Litherland Appointed Academy Manager

11 July 2023

Rochdale Football Club is delighted to announce Mark Litherland as our new Academy Manager.

Litherland has previously held the same position at Bury and Bolton Wanderers. He joins the club with immediate effect following the departure of Tony Ellis.

Upon his appointment, Litherland commented:

“I’m delighted to be here. Rochdale is a club that, over the last 20 years or so, has been renowned for producing players through the Academy.

“I’ve known Tony [Ellis] for a while and the Academy has earned a good reputation in that time.

“We’ve got a relationship with the First Team now too, which is really important. If they buy into the Academy system, it makes it so much easier for us. It’s a similar situation to the one I had when I was at Bury.

“The gaffer [Jimmy McNulty] has instilled a positive learning environment and it’s been fantastic that a few of our lads have been involved in First Team training.

“I’m looking forward to getting to know all of the scholars even further and helping Lee [Thorpe] to develop their individual learning plans and kick them on.”

The 52-year-old is a former semi-professional footballer, playing for the likes of Bacup Borough and Accrington Stanley, where he later began his coaching career.

He took charge of Stanley’s Under-18 side and progressed to coach the Reserves, before joining Burnley where he was responsible for their Foundation Phase Programme.

Litherland would then join Bury as Lead Youth Development Phase Coach before becoming Academy Manager.

Following Bury’s expulsion from the EFL, he joined Bolton Wanderers in 2020, again as Academy Manager, before departing last summer.

Welcome to the club, Mark!

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