Sydney FC’s Academy Schools In Focus

Sydney FC’s record transfer of young midfielder Jake Girdwood-Reich to US club St. Louis this month brought Sydney FC’s Academy Schools well and truly into focus.

The 20-year-old became the club’s first $1 million player having grown-up attending Sydney FC’s program at Endeavour Sports High School.

Its influence on his progress is no more apparent than in his own description of the program on the club’s website.

“The Sydney FC Academy Schools program was pivotal to me getting where I am today,” he said.

Jake Girdwood-Reich as a pupil at Endeavour Sports High School – one of Sydney FC’s Academy Football Schools

“Going to Endeavour Sports High, the environment was great but paired with Sydney FC, it really took my game and my love of football to another level.

“I highly recommend you check it out if you want to progress a career in football.”

Sydney FC’s Academy Football Schools offer young players a full-time training environment, devised and delivered by highly qualified Sydney FC Academy-approved coaches in a network of high performing schools.

Pupils combine their pursuit of academic excellence with year-round football training that reflects the Sydney FC Academy philosophies on playing, coaching, learning and talent identification.

Sydney FC’s Endeavour Sports High School won at the Bill Turner Cup last year

Roughly 20% of Sydney FC’s current Academy players attend one of the club’s four Academy Schools at Endeavour Sports High, Matraville Sports High, Illawarra Sports High and Erindale College.

Director of the Endeavour Sports High Program Liam Fitz-Gerald says the program is a great way to fast-track players football development.

“Our programs provide 150-200 hours of training annually against some of the best players in the state, based on the Sydney FC Academy philosophy.

A training session at Endeavour Sports High School

“At Endeavour, we have 22 current Academy players and the school provides an excellent environment for player development.

“The program was of enormous benefit to Jake – his time at Endeavour predates mine, but working with him at Sydney FC in the 18’s and 20’s, he was extremely physically and technically robust, a credit to the additional high-quality training he experienced at Endeavour.”

Fellow Academy graduate and Endeavour School Captain Hayden Matthews is another player from the Academy Schools pathway, and he is following Jake’s progress into the Sky Blues A-League squad.

Hayden Matthews (centre) and Jake Girdwood-Reich (right) at Endeavour Sports High School – one of Sydney FC’s Academy Football Schools

“Hayden was in the same year as Jake at Endeavour and they remain great friends, but they benefitted from the school program in unique ways.

“Hayden suffered two significant injury setbacks during his teenage years. Using the facilities and support at Endeavour, he was able to complete additional rehabilitation during school training time and has clearly developed his physical qualities to a point where he is an outstanding centre back at A-League level.

“Hayden continues to work for us at Endeavour, coaching when he can around his playing commitments and providing invaluable mentoring support to injured players.”

Endeavour celebrate winning at the Bill Turner Cup.

Trials at each school can be arranged throughout the year by contacting our Sydney FC Academy Schools directly.

Erindale College host trials this Thursday.

Head to for more information on how to do this.