Tuesday 15 July 2014
Everton have announced the return of Joe Royle to Goodison Park as a member of their youth development department.
Royle returns to the club for a third spell after taking up a role on Roberto Martinez's backroom team charged with assisting the latest phase of player development.
The Blues legend scored 119 goals in 275 appearances for Everton during his distinguished playing career and later guided the Toffees to FA Cup success as manager in 1995.
"Joe's experience and football know-how will be hugely beneficial for the youngsters at a key stage of their development"
The 65-year-old, who has left his post as football consultant at Norwich City to re-join his former club, will use his extensive footballing experience to help facilitate the progress of young players breaking through from the Everton Academy and Under-21 setup.
The former Oldham Athletic, Manchester City and Ipswich Town manager, himself a product of the Goodison youth system, will also assist in the scouting and recruitment of players.
"Everyone knows the incredible influence Joe has had at our football club, both as a player and a manager," Roberto Martinez told www.evertonfc.com. "He is a true Evertonian and we all welcome him back to Goodison Park.
"We are all very excited with the talent coming through in our Academy and we pride ourselves on the work we do with the young players.
"Joe's experience and football know-how will be hugely beneficial for the youngsters at a key stage of their development. He is the first major change in our structure in player development."
Everton finished 11th in the Barclays Under-21 Premier League table last season thereby qualifying for the first tier for the forthcoming campaign, with the league splitting into two divisions of consisting of fewer teams for the new season.
"I made my debut for Everton as a 16-year-old so I understand what it means to be a young player coming through at this football club"
"It’s great to be back," said Royle. "Everyone knows how much Everton means to me - it has been in my blood for over 50 years. I admire what Roberto achieved in his debut season and I am really looking forward to working alongside him.
"I made my debut for Everton as a 16-year-old so I understand what it means to be a young player coming through at this football club. I’m looking forward to using my experience to help the players we have here.
"I was happy with my role at Norwich City and wouldn't have considered an offer from any other club than Everton. It's like coming home for me.
"I'd like to thank Norwich for their co-operation and understanding with this situation and I wish Neil Adams and everyone at Carrow Road all the best for the new season."
Chairman Bill Kenwright added: "Joe is an Everton Giant in every sense of the word and it’s great that he has come back home.
"Developing more young players is really important to us and we know Joe will play an important role in helping us achieve these aims."