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Bob Hill

Bob Hill - Coaching Director“Football is not just a game it is a way of life. It has given me so many good values and happy times, but it has also showed me that life can be challenging, tough, demanding and yet fun and satisfying.

I have many years of experience in Youth football developing players in Grass Roots football, and I am very proud of my record of developing players within professional clubs Academies and Centres of Excellence.

Young players need encouragement and discipline to learn about life and nothing is different in the football world. As a coach it is my job to show them the way, and provide them with the right environment so that they can have an opportunity to move towards their potential.

Players have to show a real desire to improve and have a great work ethic and determination just as Ashley Young showed in his formative years. But if you achieve your potential no matter what level, life can be so rewarding and fun.

This game epitomises life, and in my opinion is the greatest sport on the planet.”

Bob Hill

Bob Hill Factfile


Years coaching

UEFA ‘A’ (in progress)
FA Youth Coaches Award 12-16 year olds
FA Psychology Level 2
FA Basic Injury
CRB Certified and Child Protection Qualified

Playing position

Professional clubs
Coaching at: Millwall, Arsenal, Queens Park Rangers (twice), Watford and Luton Town

Players worked with, including
including, Peter Crouch (QPR, Liverpool, Portsmouth, Aston Villa, Tottenham Hotspur); Nathan Tyson(Nottingham Forest); Craig Mackail-Smith (Peterborough United); Adrian Mariappa (Watford), John-Joe O’Toole (Watford, Colchester United); Jordan Parkes (Watford & Barnet); Theo Robinson (Watford & Huddersfield Town); Al Bangura (Watford, Blackpool); Hameur Bouazza (Watford, Fulham, Algeria); Joel Grant (Watford, Crewe Alexandra); Ryan Gilligan (Northampton Town), Anthony McNamee (Watford, Swindon Town, Norwich City), Ross Jenkins (Watford), Lewis Young (Watford, Burton Albion), Billy Gibson (Watford, Yeovil Town), Harry Forrester (Watford, England schoolboys & Aston Villa); Lee Hodson (Watford & Northern Ireland), Liam Henderson (Watford); Eddie Oshodi (Watford & England schoolboys), Dale Bennett (Watford); Eddie Oshodi (Watford & England schoolboys), Oliver Cleaver (Forest Green Rovers), Jake Howells (Luton Town); Jason Roberts (Blackburn Rovers & Parkfield Youth); Marc Bircham (Millwall & Queens Park Rangers); Anthony Charles (Crewe Alexandra, Barnet & Aldershot); Dean Parrott (Queens Park Rangers schoolboy & Tottenham Hotspur); Dave Moli (Luton Town & Liverpool schoolboy), recently signed professionals at Watford, Matthew Whichelow, Piero Mingoia, Jonathan Bond

Favourite all-time player
Denis Law (Manchester United & Scotland) – the ultimate Fox in the Box and great goal scorer.

Greatest goal of all time

Funniest Football memory
Grimsby Town team running out at the Vic, Watford, and one of their players disappeared down a hole in the pitch that just suddenly opened up. The game was delayed whilst the groundsmen filled the hole with sand, and it was very deep!!! Wished they had got that on camera!

All-time greatest 11

Formation: 4-3-3

Pat Jennings (N Ireland, Watford, Arsenal & Spurs)

Carlos Alberto (Brazil)
Franz Beckenbauer (Bayern Munich & Germany)
Bobby Moore (West Ham United & England)
Paolo Maldini (AC Milan & Italy)

Johan Neeskens (Ajax & Holland)
Bobby Charlton (Manchester United & England)
Zinedene Zidane (Bodeaux, Juventus, Real Madrid & France)

Denis Law
Johan Cruyff (Ajax & Holland)
Pele (Santos & Brazil)

Tony Coton (Watford)
Nigel Callaghan (Watford)
Tom Walley (Watford)
John Barnes (Watford)
Ferenc Puskas (Hungary)

Not only were these great players in their own right, but they played with a tremendous respect for others and the game, and of course I am unashamedly biased with some of them!

Where England went wrong…
Some participants didn’t adhere to a collective responsibility for selfish reasons

Happiest time in football
Being a supporter of Watford during the 10 year meteoric rise up the Football League under Elton John and Graham Taylor. The club REALLY WAS ONE and it was a joy to be a part of a collective and togetherness effort. Something England could learn after the recent World Cup experience!! But I watched, listened and learned so much during that period.

About Bob’s football mentor, Tom Walley

“I had a call out of the blue one day from Tom saying that he had been tipped off by someone that I ‘could do a bit’, and he asked me to join his coaching staff at Millwall FC Centre of Excellence. Having watched Tom play at Watford as I grew up, I knew how inspirational he had been to the club, fellow professionals and to the supporters as player and Youth Team coach. I was honoured to have the chance of working with the man that had assisted in getting Watford their first big promotion, represented his country, and produced the likes of Kenny Jackett, John Barnes, Nigel Callaghan, Nigel Gibbs, David James and so many more at Watford when Youth Team coach.

Since those early days at Millwall when he developed the likes of Ben Thatcher and Mark Kennedy, and then Ashley Cole at Arsenal under Arsene Wenger, Tom has become a very close friend and mentor. I have watched the way he treats and deals with young players, and how much he cares for each individual. It is no coincidence that the likes of Rio Ferdinand who Tom had told at 15 that he would play for England, and so many others speak very highly of one of the most successful coaches in Youth development this country has ever seen. He is honest, forthright and knows the game inside and out. He demands manners, respect, and a tough work ethic, but also has a ‘crack’ and fun with the players. I don’t know one player that has not got any respect for Tom. How could I fail to listen, watch and learn from Tom. I have such a big part of him in me, but I have also learnt to be me and to uphold those standards of decency, honesty and humility, which I too learnt at home. I have also been in a position to work with so many professional people in the game, and have picked up so many things from good football people like Ray Graydon. I am now putting something back into the game that has given me so much pleasure throughout my life too and want to help those young players who I would like to enjoy the game just as I have done.”