By Ottawa Sportspage, for Ottawa South United Soccer
OSU girls experience English football’s best
The OSU Force Academy 2006 Girls have returned from a week-long tour of England. They were fortunate enough to watch, interact and train with some of the top professional clubs in the world – including Chelsea, Tottenham, Everton and Manchester United.
These trips help our young players truly understand a professional environment and what it takes to play and train at the next level in the future. Along the way, we hope that they have also enjoyed learning about a new country to visit for many of them.
Thank you to the many tour sponsors who graciously supported this amazing experience for the girls, as well as Team Manager Kirk Delaney, the many parents who supported the team fundraising efforts, as well as the accompanying coaches for the tour.
See below for an overview of each day:
The girls completed a light training session after arriving in London, followed by some sightseeing and shopping. They finished the day by watching Chelsea vs. Crystal Palace at Stamford Bridge.
The girls went for a tour of Kensington Park, and saw Kensington Palace.
They then went for their first training session with the Chelsea RTC program at their training ground.
The girls completed a walking tour and boat cruise of London; saw many sights including the Tower Bridge, Big Ben, cruise up the river Thames, Trafalgar Square and finishing at Buckingham Palace where they got their picture taken in front of the Canada gate and palace itself. The queen was also at Buckingham Palace at the time. After the tour they went on the London eye for some fantastic views of the city.
The group travelled north with the first stop at Stratford upon the Avon; saw the home of William Shakespeare and had lunch. They then continued on to their hotel outside of Chester, Carden Park Hotel, where they completed another training session.
Coach Liam organized an opportunity for the girls to watch the Everton Ladies team practice at Finch Farm. The girls even got to take some penalty kicks against the Everton Ladies goalkeepers. From there, the girls got back on the bus and headed to Manchester for lunch and then a tour of Old Trafford followed by training with the Manchester United RTC Program.
The girls went on a tour of Chester and took a tour along the Roman walls. Some of the team went to tour Anfield and others went to both the Liverpool and Everton stadium shops for souvenirs. Later that day the girls trained with Everton RTC.
The girls traveled to Oxford for some lunch and sightseeing before heading back towards London. They also stopped at the Tottenham Training grounds for their final training session with FA coaches from Tottenham. They completed the evening with team dinner and some goodbyes to our XL Sports tour guides/coaches.
Also during March Break, Claire Rea was selected to participate in the Final Game of Distinction at the Vancouver Whitecaps Combine in front of the REX and Whitecaps residency coaches.
Two players who got their active start in soccer with OSU will play for Canada at the 2018 CONCACAF Women’s Under-17 Championship in Nicaragua. Ariel Young and Olivia Cooke will face Bermuda on Apr. 20, Costa Rica on Apr. 22, and USA on Apr. 24 in the group stage of the 8-team tournament.
The top three nations will qualify for the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Uruguay 2018.