It was another week full of football and great experiences for The New Saints FC Academy, writes Jason Brindley.
On Wednesday evening, our U8s and U9s travelled to Finch Farm to face Everton. Our U9s were only at the English Premier League team last week, this week our U8s travelled too.
We have had a number of games against them recently, on the back of age groups travelling and playing well.
It was a great experience for our Young Saints, made even more so by the fact that one of our first-team players was on hand to observe the game and give the players feedback. Attacking midfielder Chris Seargeant works for Everton as a coach as well as playing for our first-team.
It was great for our players to receive feedback from one of the players they hope to emulate one day.
Again, we thank Everton for hosting and look forward to additional games in the future.
On Saturday, we travelled to Leicester City to compete against their development squads.
Our U8, U9s and U10s were up first. Leicester had some very good young players, with all games being played at a good standard. It’s good for our players to face players from top teams, because it means that they’ll challenge themselves.
When we go to the top teams, we look at what they are doing, and if there are things that we can use or adapt to help our provision improve, for the benefit of the club and the players. We are always striving to improve, in all aspects.
Our U11 and U12/U13s mixed followed. Our U11s continued recent fine form with a very controlled performance. They show a really good understanding, and played really good football, with short combinations. It was very good to watch.
Our U12/U13s mixed played 11v11 on a full size grass pitch. It was a good challenge for our players but they responded excellently. I was really delighted with the performance and energy, plus the work rate of the players.
On Sunday, our U14s travelled to Llandudno to continue their Super6 campaign. The game was end to end and Llandudno were the better team in the first-half. Our U14s are notoriously slow starters, and this game was no different. In the second-half, we were much improved and the players took on coaches feedback/points from half-time and applied themselves very well in the second period.
Our U16s completed the football for the weekend with a fantastic performance against Caernarfon at Park Hall Stadium. Each player was at it from the first whistle, playing quick football and looking to go forward and penetrate the opposition defence. It was a really good game and entertaining to watch, and it was good to see players take on recent training topics.
Next week we look forward to facing Penycae, Wirral Schoolboys, Airbus and beginning our winter Futsal programme. Also next Saturday, our Foundation Phase are looking forward to being a part of The New Saints Community Foundation float in Oswestry Town’s Christmas Parade.