Ben Ogilvy restores football link with the city of Bangor

Ben Ogilvy

Fifteen years ago Ben Ogilvy became the youngest ever player to represent Bangor City in Europe at the age of 16.

Fast forward to 2020 and Ogilvy is now helping unearth the area’s future stars as new head of development at Bangor 1876.

Ogilvy will be well-known to football fans in the city as in 2005 he was the youngest player to represent it in European competition when he faced FC Dinaburg of Latvia in the Inter-Toto Cup.

He came on for Chris Priest in the second half of the second leg in Dinaburg, which the Welsh Premier side lost 2-0 (1-4 on aggregate).

Seven months earlier, the graduate of the Bangor academy made his first team debut at Farrar Road against Airbus UK.

A composed left footer with sure touch and natural ability, the future looked bright, but unfortunately his playing career was cut short by serious injury and he retired from playing Welsh Premier League football aged 22.

Since then he has been involved in coaching and managing including a recent stint as manager of his hometown club Pwllheli.

Now comes a new opportunity with Bangor 1876, an ambitious club formed only last season.

Even though the club has commenced offering taster sessions and inaugurated its Fun Football programme, in conjunction with McDonald’s and the FAW Trust, it suspended it for a few weeks following the imposition of the Bangor local lock-down and the recent national lock-down.

1876 hope to re-commence activities in the near future and will be informing parents of the arrangements.

It will be continuing with training sessions for the junior teams in readiness for the new Gwyrfai League season.

Welcoming Ogilvy, club manager Mel Jones said: “I have known Ben for many years and know how committed he is to developing young talent.

“He has a vision which fits in well with how we wish to nurture players so that they can follow a pathway to our first team but also to provide opportunities to children of all abilities to flourish and enjoy their football.”

Bangor 1876 club manager Mel Jones

Ogilvy was due to meet with the club board via a ZOOM link yesterday (Wednesday) when he was set to outline his vision and proposals reflecting the ethos of developing a sustainable, competitive, community-focused club.

Commenting on his appointment, Ogilvy said: “I am delighted to join the club as Head of Development. I’m looking forward to playing a part in this fantastic journey the club is on. When I received the call from Mel I was immediately interested in becoming part of the 1876 family.”

He added: “I’m fully aware of what football means to the supporters of Bangor having been lucky enough to play for them. it’s clear to see what the club means to them so it’s a great feeling to be joining the club.

“I will be looking to build on the excellent work that Iwan (Williams – who recently joined the Chester FC management team) had started.

“I’m also looking forward to working with Mel again. I have known Mel since I was a junior at Bangor myself and have learned so much from him as a coach and as a person so I’m looking forward to working alongside him again. I can’t wait to get going and meet the coaches.“

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