Squirts take over fields

South Burnett Times - - SPORT -

THE fo­cus was on hav­ing fun at the first day of Squirts.

The Kin­garoy Red Backs soc­cer fields were packed with kids keen to kick goals while their par­ents looked on from the side­lines.

The pro­gram is for chil­dren be­tween the ages of three and five and uses soc­cer to de­velop mo­tor skills.

Kin­garoy Squirts coach­ing co-or­di­na­tor Peter Ma­her said the in­ter­est in ju­nior soc­cer was boom­ing and 42 play­ers had signed up.

“We could prob­a­bly take over all the other ju­nior fields there is that much in­ter­est (in Squirts),” Ma­her said.

“We had to cap ours at 42 be­cause we could have had 100-and-some­thing that wanted to do it.

“But we have to cap it, the room it takes up and all the par­ents on the side­line we had to keep it to 42.”

The pop­u­lar­ity of the pro­gram shows soc­cer has its feet firmly planted in the South Bur­nett.

And Ma­her was con­fi­dent the skills learned in Squirts would trans­late to a stronger ju­nior com­pe­ti­tion.

“Once they’ve started here they con­tinue from Squirts in to the un­der 6s. I’d say prob­a­bly all of them here will (con­tinue to play).

“We teach them move­ment, bal­ance, con­trol­ling the ball and make sure they are all hav­ing fun.”

And keep­ing a pack of chil­dren un­der the age of five is prov­ing a whole new ball game for the 12 vol­un­teer coaches.

“We give them all a ball each and have them kick goals.

“No one wants to be a goal keeper; they just want to kick a ball into the back of a net.”

Squirts will run for six weeks, fin­ish­ing the week be­fore South Bur­nett Foot­ball’s grand fi­nal games.

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