As part of the Harry Gregg Foundation’s inaugural “Festival of Football” in partnership with the Ulster University, upwards on fifty Irish League Academy teams will descend on the Coleraine campus this weekend.
Teams from Coleraine FC, Crusaders, Linfield, Cliftonville, Glenavon, Glentoran, Portadown, Ballymena Utd, Institute, Armagh, Warrenpoint Town, Ballymoney Utd and Derry Colts will come together for this invitational event.
Saturday August 15 sees the under 15 to 17’s take part, with Sunday introducing the under 12 to 14’s.
All teams will be drawn to play twice with up to 6 pitches active at any one time. Games are scheduled to kick off at 10am with a small opening reception for the invited guests taking place on the Saturday at 11am.
The emphasis of the event is very much one of a non competitive nature with scorelines becoming secondary to development and enjoyment.
Coaches and spectators alike are encouraged to leave behind the pressure of competition and let the players display their skills and abilities. Speaking about the vent, Harry said “ I’m glad. This is so important.
“Youth football should be considered a corn field or meadow and the youngest players like wild flowers: left alone they will find a way to grow, there’s time for cultivation later.”