Four top football clubs are set to provide hundreds of unique training opportunities to help prepare jobseekers for the workplace.
Premier League into Work is being delivered at Chelsea, Everton, Sunderland and Portsmouth football clubs.
They are working with the Premier League, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and local employers to give jobseekers the skills and abilities they need to find work, while improving their fitness levels and football skills.
Employment minister Jim Knight announced the launch of the £581,000 initiative at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge stadium alongside Premier League chief Richard Scudamore.
The courses will help develop interview skills, job search techniques, CV preparation, health and fitness and football training.
Each course will last 10 weeks and participants will undertake a two-week work placement. The scheme is based on the Support Employment programme which is currently being run by 20 Scottish football clubs.
Jobcentre Plus advisers will identify suitable candidates, within specified boundaries of participating clubs, to join the courses.
They are open to anyone who has been claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance for six months or more and is not eligible for or participating in other contracted schemes. About 350 people are expected to participate in the schemes.
Scudamore said: “Premier League into Work shows yet again the unique opportunity that football clubs have to make a positive impact on people’s lives. Football is an incredibly powerful vehicle and can make a real difference.