10/21/2018 12:21:33 PM (GMT+3)

Aspire Academy kicks off international tri-series football event

Aspire Academy kicks off international tri-series football event

DOHA: Aspire Academy kicked off another exciting Tri-Series football tournament for the 2018-2019 season which witnessed the best young talents from Asia, Africa, Europe and South America compete against its youth teams.

Last week edition featured U-13 and U-14 players from Buriram United (Thailand), Ventforet Kofu (Japan) and Aspire.

This season’s edition will feature a number of talented Asian teams, allowing Qatar to pit themselves against future stars of the Asian Football Confederation, to which Qatar belongs.

“It has been a pleasure to see how our Aspire Academy goalkeepers have been applying the style of goalkeeping we have been working on. The goalkeeper is expected to use his feet more than in the past. In doing so, he becomes the 11th field player as opposed to the old style of 10 field players plus a goalkeeper.

"The Aspire goalkeepers have already shown an improved understanding and application of the use of their feet, initiating some very positive moves," said Aspire Academy Senior Goalkeeping coach Willy Stevaert.

Meanwhile, Japanese club Ventforet Kofu were on their fourth visit to Aspire and their U-13 coach, Yosuke Nishikawa paid compliments to the cordial relationship between the Japanese side and Aspire.

"We get a tremendous amount of value by playing in the tournament. Over the last four years, we have been privileged to participate and have seen great progress in our young players," said Nishikawa.

Buriram’s U-14 Team Manager, Talengkit Bunchasutikul said, "We appreciate being invited back to play in the tournament. The boys love playing on these beautiful pitches. We played against good teams from Ventforet Kofu and Aspire Academy. We are happy to have emerged victorious in both age groups.”

The Series exposes Academy’s teams on a regular basis to international opponents and allows them to test themselves against different playing styles, philosophies and models from all over the world.

The football programme of Aspire Academy is recognised as one of the strongest in the world in terms of detection and selection of talent, as well as training, competition and evaluation of each player. The nurturing of players starts years before they reach the age to join the Academy as high school student-athletes.

Last year’s competitions saw the participation of more than 1200 players from local, regional and international clubs from African, European, Asian and South American countries.