22 Apr Wellington Phoenix Primed for Trip to Spain
Last Christmas – or St. Stephen’s Day to be specific – we brought to you some fantastic news about a 12,000km trip for Wellington Phoenix in which we had arranged to this invite exclusive tournament through our partners in the Catalan FA. Wellington Phoenix under-12 group were to be our latest and most ambitious football tour to take, travelling from New Zealand to Spain this May.
With the trip just around the corner we are here with an update for the tour, having arranged a pre-tournament training camp at our European training base Futbol Salou Sports Complex, in Spain. The pre-tournament training camp will provide the group with the perfect setting to train for the tournament – Arousa F7 Cup, while acclimatising to the Iberian weather.
The Arousa F7 Cup is an invite-only competition, looking to enhance the quality of the tournament; only teams who are of a certain high standard were able to register a place. DB Sports had special access to the tournament registration process, and within that were able to get Wellington Phoenix a place in the tournament.
The quality of the tournament is extensive. Not only are Arsenal FC, FC Barcelona and Real Madrid in Group A alongside Wellington Phoenix, but other groups showcase striking quality too. Indeed, Atletico Madrid and PSG are the standouts from Group C, while in Group D there is a very talented Major League Soccer (MLS) all-star side, who will take on the likes of Manchester City, AFC Ajax and Villarreal CF.
Futbol Salou is our European training base, headed by company affiliate former RCD Espanyol youth coach Albert Vinas. At Futbol Salou the Wellington Phoenix under-12 group will be prepped for the Arousa F7 tournament in which they will take on the likes of FC Barcelona, Real Madrid and Arsenal FC.
It won’t be all work before the Arousa F7 tournament however; there will be time for fun too. Indeed, DB Sports Tours have arranged for the group to take in some La Liga action at the Camp Nou, wherein FC Barcelona take on Villarreal.
Along with the preparation and the Arousa F7 Cup itself, Wellington Phoenix will also travel to the north of Spain too, wherein they will play two friendly matches to cap off our ultimate football tour.
This fantastic trip was only made possible because of Paul O’Reilly. The former Shelbourne and Bray Wanderers player left his post as the FAI coordinator of the BA Sport & Exercise (Soccer) course in IT Carlow, in order to move to New Zealand to take on a development officer role with the New Zealand FA towards the end of 2015.
O’Reilly was appointed as head coach of Southern United FC, who play in New Zealand’s top tier in 2016. Through his connections with New Zealand football now rather extensive, Paul was able to work with our team here at DB Sports Tours to identify top teams who could compete at this level.
Unfortunately despite the very best preparation for this trip, the Wellington Phoenix goalkeeper cannot make the trip. However we have arranged that St. Joseph’s Boys goalkeeper Dylan Kane will make the trip to Spain, joining up with the Kiwi group, to play in the Arousa F7 Cup.
Everyone here at DB Sports Tours would like to wish Wellington Phoenix the very best of luck on their travels and their trip to Spain and Portugal. We hope we have arranged the perfect football tour befitting of such a lengthy trip.