Sum­mer kick­start

Central Leader - - SPORT -

Young foot­ballers are hit­ting the ground run­ning this sum­mer, kick­ing out the myth that foot­ball is a win­ter-only sport.

The sum­mer months tra­di­tion­ally make for a quiet time for grass­roots foot­ball but Auck­land Foot­ball chief ex­ec­u­tive David Parker says the game is es­tab­lish­ing it­self as a year-round sport of choice for Auck­lan­ders.

Foot­ball hol­i­day pro­grammes have been in full swing this month at Mt Roskill’s War Me­mo­rial Park and the Mt Al­bert YMCA.

Auck­land Foot­ball game devel­op­ment man­ager Steve Roberts is lead­ing the War Me­mo­rial Park pro­gramme for a large num­ber of play­ers who are new to the sport.

‘‘We want our pro­gramme to give th­ese kids a fun taste of the game early in the year so that when reg­is­tra­tions open for clubs shortly, sign­ing up to play lo­cal club foot­ball is some­thing they are ex­cited about,’’ Roberts says.

Clubs are also nom­i­nat­ing young play­ers aged 12 to 16 to try out for places on Auck­land Foot­ball’s player devel­op­ment pro­gramme the Fed­er­a­tion Tal­ent Cen­tre start­ing next month.

Auck­land Foot­ball devel­op­ment of­fi­cer Simon Richards says the quick start to the pro­gramme is an im­por­tant as­pect of the new ap­proach to de­vel­op­ing fu­ture All Whites and Foot­ball Ferns.

Photo: SHANE WENZLICK

Run­ning on: Auck­land’s young foot­ballers are con­tin­u­ing to head to the pitch over the sum­mer months, tak­ing part in Auck­land Foot­ball’s hol­i­day pro­grammes.

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