COLERAINE Schools headed off to Sweden this week to take part in the UMEA Festival of Football.
Three teams made up of local school children will play at Under-10, 11 and 13 level and coach Ruairi McClean told Times Sport they can’t wait to get started.
“The boys are really looking forward to it,” he said before jetting off on Monday.
“It will be a fantastic opportunity for them to play games against and mix in a ‘non-footballing environment’ with children from countries all around the world - a once in a lifetime opportunity.
“The boys will be sharing accomodation with other teams and they are very excited about this. It will be a very proud moment watching our boys compete in the competition!
“I won’t deny that there has been a lot of hard work done in order to make sure that the trip materialised but the support of the local community has been overwhelming. The parents of the boys have been extremely supportive too.
“I’d like to thank all our kit sponsors McDonald’s (sponsored a kit for each teamm), McKendry Fabrications (Under 10 away strip), Bann Building (Under 11 away strip) and Bond’s Jewellers (Under 13 away strip).
“Also Billy Ellis and everyone who helped make the Night at the Races event such a success and The Ice House.
“And all the staff who have given up a lot of their time to coach/help out with various aspects of this project.
“I would also like to thank Mr. John Platt (Millburn PS) who has given me the opportunity to lead a project like this.
“And thanks to Millburn PS and Coleraine College for use of their facilities and the many local schools who have made donations in support players who attend their schools.
“And finally all the players and the parents of the players have shown tremendous enthusiasm and dedication to the project!”