26 Nov Futbol Salou Inspection Visit A Huge Hit
FUTBOL Salou are two words Irish schoolboy teams could be hearing a lot more about in the future after the Spanish destination welcomed club representatives from this country for the first time last weekend.
The Irish Daily Star’s TARGET supplement joined our travelling party of 52 coaches, managers, secretaries and officials from clubs and leagues across Ireland on the exciting DB Sports Tours Inspection Visit to the Catalonian football complex.
Along with the lucky WINNERS of our competition with the Irish Daily Star to send EIGHT visitors on the trip, representatives from clubs like St Kevin’s Boys and Belvedere to leagues such as the NDSL and Kildare underage league traveled.
The trip was a huge hit with the touring party, who sampled everything the new destination has to offer Irish teams – underage and senior – over the two days.
From the relaxing surroundings of the accommodation on offer at the impressive Cambrils Park (above) to the football experience at Futbol Salou that is sure to excite any player.
After sampling all that Cambrils Park has to offer upon arrival on Friday, the group got the chance to tour the Futbol Salou facility and meet Director of Football Albert Vinas (above right).
A former youth player and academy coach at La Liga side RCD Espanyol, Vinas treated the group to a presentation on the unique Catalonian style that teams experience at Futbol Salou.
The former Catalunya FA coach – who tutored former Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova – spoke in-depth about the unique identity of the local football culture that we all best associate with Barca’s La Masia academy.
Vinas spoke about the fact that youth development in the region has benefited from the fact that the 3000 UEFA qualified coaches are filtered into academy structures because of the lack of jobs in the few professional clubs.
In general, the Irish coaches were given an insight into the unique factors that make Spanish youth development so successful and were even surprised to hear that youngsters only play 7 v 7 before moving on to the 11-a-side game and learn tactics from the very start.
The following morning proved to be equally as enjoyable and educational for the group as they traveled to Barcelona to visit the youth academy of RCD Espanyol.
Following a tour of that facility and a presentation from Espanyol academy coaches, the type of local talent that Irish team’s will face if they visit was on show against the club’s Under-16s and Under-11s in consecutive games.
DB Sports Tours Managing Director DAVID BERBER was behind the idea to introduce the Irish market to Futbol Salou and the weekend’s trip has convinced him it will be a successful combination.
“I already knew that any Irish coach, player or club would love everything Futbol Salou has to offer a touring team – and the reaction from all the coaches at the end of the trip confirmed that,” said Berber.