Pro soc­cer team holds youth camps in Har­bour Grace

The Compass - - Front Page - BY CHRIS LEWIS editor@cb­n­com­

Young soc­cer play­ers look­ing to sharp­en­ing their skills with or with­out the ball may want to con­sider keep­ing their sched­ule open to­wards the end of July. That’s be­cause the Van­cou­ver White­caps Foot­ball Club — a Ma­jor League Soc­cer team — is host­ing a youth camp in Har­bour Grace July 24-28.

Soc­cer play­ers in Har­bour Grace and sur­round­ing com­mu­ni­ties can look for­ward to a big op­por­tu­nity this sum­mer.

The New­found­land and Labrador Soc­cer As­so­ci­a­tion re­cently part­nered with the Van­cou­ver White­caps FC. As part of the part­ner­ship, White­caps FC is sup­port­ing a spe­cial youth camp in Har­bour Grace next month, July 24-28. Un­der seven and un­der 11 ses­sions will run in the morn­ings, with un­der 12 and un­der 16 camps tak­ing up the af­ter­noon.

White­caps FC and the NLSA will also col­lab­o­rate on high per­for­mance pro­grams, in­clud­ing plans to run prospects pro­grams for boys and girls ages U-13 to U-17, as well as pre­prospects pro­grams at the U-12 level.

ID camps will serve as an en­try win­dow for the pro­grams. ID camps for boys will take place be­tween June 27-29 and July 3-5 for girls.

Play­ers will be in­vited to at­tend these camps based on con­sul­ta­tions with club and re­gional tech­ni­cal direc­tors. In­vi­ta­tions will be emailed in early June.

Sev­eral play­ers will then be cho­sen from the ID camps to at­tend the pre-prospects pro­gram­ming, which takes place ev­ery Mon­day af­ter­noon start­ing July 17, run­ning un­til the end of Septem­ber 2017.

CBN Mi­nor Soc­cer’s Don Coombs says he’s very ex­cited about the pro­grams, and can see it tak­ing lo­cal soc­cer play­ers to the lev­els they’ve al­ways dreamed about.

“This is a won­der­ful op­por­tu­nity for any soc­cer play­ers in the area,” said Coombs. “It’s not just for chil­dren, it’s not just for older play­ers, ev­ery­one’s get­ting the chance to im­prove their skills and re­ally make a name, and pos­si­bly a ca­reer, for them­selves in the sport, and I think that’s great.”

Coombs added that soc­cer in the prov­ince has been do­ing much bet­ter in re­cent years, and that this part­ner­ship will only im­prove things fur­ther.

“Soc­cer’s been do­ing re­ally well in the prov­ince for a while now. It’s a pretty pop­u­lar sport,” Coombs ex­plained. “I think that’s be­cause it’s so easy to get into. It’s not like hockey, where you need to spend hun­dreds of dol­lars on skates, sticks, and ev­ery­thing else. With soc­cer, you just need a pair of cleats. We pro­vide uni­forms. I al­ways tell par­ents to just buy the cheap­est cleats you can find, be­cause at the end of the day, it’s their kids’ love of the sport that’s go­ing to get them far, not the price of the cleats they wear.”

Top play­ers from the prov­ince will be mon­i­tored and eval­u­ated for the full-time pro­fes­sional club en­vi­ron­ment in Van­cou­ver through the White­caps FC Res­i­dency and Girls Elite REX pro­grams.

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