U23's Coaching Staff

U23's Coaching Staff

Date of Birth

Simon Rusk


Simon Rusk was appointed Albion's under-23 coach in March 2015, after stepping up from his role as the club's under-18s coach.

Rusk led the Seagulls to an eighth-placed finish in the 2016/17 Premier League 2 Division 2 campaign, and has stepped in as first-team coach for Albion's senior squad on multiple occasions.

Albion's under-23s achieved promotion to Premier League 2 Division 1 under Rusk in 2017/18, before finishing third in the top flight during their debut campaign at that level.

Rusk enjoyed a playing career prior to coaching, as he made over 140 appearanced for Boston United, before moving on to York City and Crawley Town towards the end of his career.

Shannon Ruth

Assistant Coach/GK Coach

By Paul Hazlewood
Shannon Ruth.

Shannon Ruth was appointed as Albion’s under-23 assistant coach in January 2018, following a spell as lead academy goalkeeping coach - a role he still oversees.

After playing football at non-league level in the Conference, Ruth began coaching with Chelsea at the age of 18, as he worked with the under-9 to under-12 goalkeepers at the club.

Head of goalkeeping roles at Aldershot and Reading followed - four years with the Royals - before joining Albion, initially as a goalkeeping coach before stepping up to be Rusk’s assistant.

Andrew Crofts

Player Coach

By Paul Hazlewood
Andrew Crofts.

Andrew Crofts re-joined the club in July 2019 in a new role as player-coach as part of Simon Rusk’s under-23 side. 

The midfielder signed a two-year contract as one of three over-age outfield players permitted under Premier League 2 rules.

The 36-year-old former Albion skipper enjoyed a playing career across all four top tiers in England, beginning life in the game with local club Gillingham and also representing Norwich City in the Premier League.

With the Seagulls, Crofts had two spells on the south coast either side of his time with the Canaries, turning out for Albion 125 times and found the back of the net on 13 occasions.

He has also represented Wales on the international stage, making 29 caps at senior level.