Everton Under-18s coach Keith Southern has heaped praise on director of football Marcel Brands and believes he has created a positive atmosphere in the academy.

The Toffees signed the Dutchman as their director of football in May 2018 in order to revamp their recruitment method and the way the club went about their business behind the scenes.  


Brands is known for his eye for talent, but the 58-year-old has taken a keen interest in the club’s academy and has taken a hands-on approach to conducting business for the club at youth level.

Southern, who leads Everton Under-18s, admits that the Dutchman often visits the academy and most probably knows a lot about the players featuring at various levels.

The Everton academy coach also insisted that Brands is a very accessible person and has managed to create a positive environment at the club as well as the academy.

“Marcel comes to lots of games. I’d be surprised if he didn’t know any of the boys’ names right the way down to the younger groups”, Southern told The Athletic.

“He’s involved on a day-to-day basis with Joel [Waldron, head of academy] and Sean Lundon [head of academy coaching], who is the link between Marcel and the rest of us.

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“His door is always open and there’s a really nice feel about the place at the moment. He respects what Everton is and the history we have of producing players.

“We’re looking forward to some good times ahead.”

Brands is hopeful that his work in the academy will bear fruit for Everton in the future.