Tony Annan named academy director

Tony Annan named new Atlanta United Academy Director

Atlanta United today announced that Academy Director Richard Money will return to the UK having accepted a new position as Academy Manager for Norwich City FC based in Norwich, Norfolk England.

Atlanta United Academy Manager Tony Annan has been named the club’s new Academy Director effective immediately and will continue to report to Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra.

Money came to Atlanta to launch the Academy program in April 2016 after a long and distinguished career as a player, coach and manager specializing in youth development for numerous elite international academies. As Atlanta United’s first Academy Director, Money has engineered a top Academy program that has already seen substantial success in its inaugural season including a #1 ranking for the U18 squad and the successful signing of two homegrown players to the club’s first team.

“After careful consideration, returning to the UK is the best decision for my family at this time,” said Money. “It’s been a special experience building a program in a country, city and league that are all new to me, and I’m proud at what we have accomplished in a short period of time. I have great respect for the club’s leadership and am grateful for their understanding and support. I look forward to following their success this year and beyond.”

Since the Atlanta United Academy began play in August 2016, thirteen youth players have been called up to National Teams and four are currently in residency full-time with the U17 National Team. 

“The Norwich City Academy Manager position is a tremendous opportunity for Richard to get back to the UK,” said Atlanta United president Darren Eales. “Richard has made significant contributions as our club’s first Academy Director and we are grateful for his leadership and expertise as we launched our youth development program.  We wish him and his family the very best in this next chapter.”

Assuming the role of Academy Director, Annan has worked alongside Money establishing the Atlanta United Academy since the program’s inception.  A 20-year veteran in youth development in the Atlanta market, Annan recently passed both the U.S. Soccer Academy Director’s Course and the prestigious Elite Formation Coaching License (EFCL) course making him one of the most qualified Academy coaches in the US and one of only six coaches to hold both licenses.  He has also successfully coached the Academy’s U16 squad to a #1 ranking this season.  

“We truly appreciate Richard’s dedication in starting our Academy program off on such strong footing and are pleased that Tony will continue to build on that foundation,” said Atlanta United Technical Director Carlos Bocanegra. “Having worked alongside Richard from the beginning and with his extensive youth development and coaching experience, Tony is a natural fit for the Director role.  The Atlanta United Academy will continue to grow as the premier youth development program in MLS under his leadership.”

Annan will oversee all aspects of the academy program including planning, curriculum development, strategy, structure and organizational operations.