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Wednesday 29th May 2024

Scottish League Cup Group Stage Draw - 1pm

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U20's Profile: Jamie Henry

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A product of the AFC Youth Academy centre in Glasgow, under Peter Weir's guidance Jamie Henry has made great progress since joining the club at U14 level. A dynamic box to box midfield player who covers every blade of grass, Jamie joined the club full time at the start of this season.


Now working under U20 coach Paul Sheerin, he is continuing to learn his trade under the watchful eye of a top quality midfielder, an opportunity he appreciates to the full.


"Paul Sheerin is a very good coach and a good guy. In training, if I make mistakes, he will tell me how to improve so I don't make the same mistakes. You can tell when he joins in at training that he had lots of ability as a player - he still has!


"Having Scott Anderson involved with the U20s as well as the U17s is important too. During pre-season, Scott came with us to Portugal. All the new boys already knew him and that made it easy for us to settle in. The fact we have all settled in so quickly was important and has probably been a factor in the results we have had this season.

"I really enjoyed being part of the Glasgow Centre and working with Peter Weir. His training sessions were always very good. It did not matter what numbers were there on any particular night, he would still put on a very good session and make it a very good tempo. I am too young to have seen him play but I have watched a few DVDs of him playing in cup finals and I've heard he was a very good player.


"I am from Clydebank, just outside Glasgow, and went to Clydebank High. I joined Aberdeen half way through the U15 season. I played there for six months and then had two seasons at U17 level and then I came in full time at the start of this year.


"At the Glasgow Centre, a typical week would see us train on a Tuesday night at Garscube Sports Complex, Wednesday we were at Petershill and then on a Friday we were through at Holytown in the Motherwell area, so there were three different areas to go to. We would then have the games on a Sunday. If it was a home game in Aberdeen, it was an early rise on Sunday morning. It was a lot of travelling but it is what I had to do to get here. It was a big commitment from my parents, there was a lot of money spent on petrol!


"All the Glasgow boys got on well and Kalvin Orsi and Daniel Harvie have come in full time this year as well. We have trained together for years. It is good to have boys you have known for a long time setting out on this adventure at the same time. We are able to support each other.


"Last year for the U17s, I did well but I didn't feel that I was consistent. I was a bit unsure as to whether I would get offered a full time deal or not but then one night out of the blue at training in Glasgow, Peter Weir took me aside and told me I was getting a full time contract. It was a wonderful feeling. It also meant there was no uncertainty. I knew what I was doing. I did not have to go back to school. I could concentrate fully on my football. It is great being a professional player. There is nothing better than training every day. I'm enjoying living in Aberdeen too. I passed my driving test up here so I am getting to know my way about! Having a car makes things easier."


"There is a good spirit in our dressing room and there are a couple of good characters in there! But everyone gets on well and there is no one in there who thinks they are better than everyone else. I know that is the case in some other dressing rooms."


With five over age outfield players allowed to play for the U20s this season, it has meant the younger players have had less game time but Jamie fully understands the reasons for this.


"It is obviously my first year full time. I knew that I was going to get limited game time but I feel that once I have come on the pitch, I have done quite well. It is a very strong squad though and just like the first team squad at the moment.


"Obviously it's frustrating if you are training every day but not playing games. But on the up side, when you do play alongside the first team players you do learn a lot. You are able to watch what they do close up and then you can try and take that into your own game. All the young boys like myself want to play but the over age players who are not involved with the first team need to get some football as well. You just have to bide your time and be patient. I know my time will come."


Jamie was in the TSB U18 Scotland squad for the Centenary Shield campaign last year. The squad sees young footballers brought together from schools across Scotland and has proved to be a useful springboard for a number of high profile players in recent years, including our own Scott McKenna.


"I was in the Scotland Schoolboy squad which was U18 level. That was a very good experience, playing at the big stadiums. We played Ireland, Northern Ireland, Wales and England. The biggest result was the 1-1 draw with England down at Ewood Park. That was a good game for us and I was fortune enough to get man of the match.


"The highlight for me in my Aberdeen career so far was coming on in the game against Celtic. We won the game 2-1 in Brechin. I came on and helped the guys get a victory that night which was a great feeling. Celtic are always very strong at all youth levels so it was fantastic to win.


"We are doing very well in the Development League and have been near the top for most of the campaign. It is very close between ourselves, Hamilton and Celtic who have a number of games in hand. We are now entering the business end of the season and we are still in touch at the top. It is up to us to keep winning games and see where that takes us.


"For me personally, between now and the end of the season, I want to get as involved as I can and then prepare myself for next season which is going to be a big year for me."



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