Melville’s full time training programme

Melville United will be running a full time senior training programme for the 2018 Northern League season.

The schedule will consist of two mornings and three evening sessions per week and will make Melville one of only a handful of organisations in New Zealand to offer a full-time training programme.

The senior squad will train as a group in the evening as they did in 2017 with the additional morning sessions being predominantly run for U23-aged players. The training schedule will be delivered and overseen by Melville head coaches Sam Wilkinson and Michael Mayne and newly appointed head of sports science, Simon Tyndel.

Melville chairman Wytse Bouma welcomed the programme, saying it would appeal to both young and experienced players looking to further develop.

“It ties in with the club’s academy coaching philosophy, providing a consistent message across the club as a whole,” Bouma said.

Meanwhile Wilkinson said the main aim of the intensified schedule was to help bridge the gap between the amateur and professional level for aspirational players.

“More training will obviously have performance benefits for our senior teams but we also want to give our young players the best chance of going and playing at a higher level,” he said.

“By training full-time, we are better preparing our players to go into International or professional environments.”

Mayne said the 2018 training schedule offered players a unique opportunity.

“If you are a young player in the Waikato region with aspirations to have a career in the game then we are clearly the only club you should consider playing for,” he said.

“At 18 or 19 I would have snapped your hand off for this kind of opportunity. A full-time club based training programme for 17-23 year-olds is very hard to find in this country. To be offering that in Waikato shows tremendous commitment and foresight from the club.”

Melville narrowly missed out on promotion to the Lotto NRFL Premier Division in 2017 and while there is a strong development motive behind the full-time training programme, Wilkinson said results are still at the forefront of their thinking.

“We know we will ultimately be judged on results, but we don’t believe winning and development are mutually exclusive. Having players train full time time can only improve our ability to win games and by developing our own players we give ourselves a better chance of sustained success.”

The two additional training sessions will take place on Monday and Tuesday mornings with the Monday session being a football based one and the Tuesday session being a physical development one. Tyndel said careful thought had gone into the scheduling and content of the sessions.

“By scheduling the sessions early in the week it takes away any risk of players going into a game on a Saturday tired or fatigued,” Tyndel said.

“ Having said that we also want to make sure we maximise recovery time after Saturdays game – that is why the more physically demanding of the morning sessions will be on the Tuesday when it is over 48 hours after the Saturday game.”

For more information about the Melville United senior or academy programmes please contact:

Sam Wilkinson: or
Michael Mayne:

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