The latest Academy round-up, written by Jason Brindley.
All weekends are extremely busy for The New Saints FC Academy, yet this weekend was that little bit extra special.
On Friday evening our U9s, 10s and 11s travelled up to the Aon Training Complex in Carrington, home to the biggest club in England, Manchester United.
It was a fantastic experience for our players, facing off against United, one of the most prestigious Academies in world football. Our players met United’s first team superstars who were finishing as we arrived.
Our U9s and 11s played off in the indoor 3G whilst our U10s played in the outdoor ‘Cage’ which didn’t have any side-lines or out of bounds. It was good to see as the play was fast and frantic. It took a little getting used too but they soon picked up the hang of it.
Indoors our U9s and 11s were fantastic, both age groups not being daunted by the opposition and taking the game to them. Was great to see.
On Saturday morning our U7s and 8s welcomed local side Brickfield Rangers to Park Hall Stadium for fixtures. Both sides showed off their new away kit and played some really good football.
On Sunday our U10-14s travelled to face Wrexham at Colliers Park, Gresford. Thank you to Wrexham for hosting the fixtures and we hope to return the favour in the near future.
Our U16s welcomed Flint Town to Park Hall Stadium. It was a strong performance from our eldest Academy age group. What was most pleasing was seeing signs of what we have been working on in recent training sessions baring fruition on the field. That as a coach is one of the best things, to see signs of players understanding how we play and the full learning process being evident.
We train on different topics each week which incorporate the playing style and DNA of the club, to put it into practice in our fixtures, it’s what it’s all about as a coach. The players were fantastic.
We finish off the report with our U15s who welcomed the Thailand National Team to Park Hall Stadium for a prestigious fixture.
It was an incredible experience for our young Saints. To face off against a National Side of any country is an amazing achievement which not many can say they have one. We treated the fixture like it was a special one and we held both the Thai and Welsh National Anthems prior to kick off, as well as paying a minute’s silence in respect for the King of Thailand who died exactly 12 months ago yesterday.
The Country went into morning for a period of 12 months and it ends this weekend when the country removes the black decoration from all the public buildings.
The Thailand team were technically very strong but also tactically astute. They gave our 15s a very good game and it was end to end at times, especially in the second half.
We were delighted to host such a prestigious fixture. To even being considered shows the strength of the Academy and club a as whole, we are continuing to improve all the time and to increase the brand and awareness of the club even further is fantastic for all involved at The New Saints FC.
To find out more about our Academy, contact: firstname.lastname@example.org