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Damien Curran: October Update

11 months ago By Neil Coleman

Head of Youth Academy Damien Curran talks about life a the club during the past month.

We are well underway in the season, I’ve been checking on match reports to see how the teams have been doing and I would just like to say to coaches and players once again, keep up the hard work and commitment.

There’s so many teams it’s hard to see each team but I am confident the coaches with your child’s group has the best interests of their development.

Across the Youth Academy from Under-16's down to Under-9's we have 15 teams playing from Ballymena small side games (SSGs), Harry Gregg Foundation League, South Belfast Youth League and the NIBFA National League. The same ethos applies to all our players “BE THE BEST YOU CAN BE!”

It’s a learning curve for players and coaches within the Academy. Enjoyment from everyone is most important. When we enjoy our football we are more than likely to improve aspects within the game. From foundation ball mastery to more tactical awareness as the players grow more understanding of the game.

Ballymena United Youth Academy is all about trying to establish a safe environment for our boys and girls to enjoy, learn and improve their football skills and knowledge.and potentially make it either in our senior team or beyond.

Our job as coaches is try and improve each player therefore improving teams and hopefully performances and results will be the result of coaches hard work and encouragement on the training ground.

During October I was fortunate enough to take in a few games these included
• Under-10 South Belfast Youth League team v GREENISLAND JETS - were our boys had a good result but more importantly a good commuted performance!
• Under-12 National League v LARNE YOUTH in the NIBFA Plate. I was pleased with attitude of coaches and players. Confident performance from Chris Duff & Ronnie Balmer's team.
• Under-12 South Belfast Youth League team v St. OLIVER PLUNKETT . Good game to watch but away team had the better first half and after team talk at half time boys seemed to raise there performance early in second half were the Sky Blues were able to score the next goal reducing the score to 2-1. Momentum was with the Sky Blues only to be hit by a sucker goal making it 3-1 to Plunkett. Good 15 minute spell was the highlight in second half.
• Under-10 South Belfast Youth League team v SPRINGFIELD STAR. Parts of the game where good. When Ballymena played some good passing moves. Unfortunately these weren’t frequent enough and Springfield Star were to strong on the day. Learning from experience hopefully for these young boys

Finally thank you for all your support so far.

Remember each player has there own pathway, some are slower developers than others keep encouraging and stay positive. It’s only a game .

But DEFINITELY THE BEST GAME the joy I’ve seen on the kids when they’ve scored a goal or played well is priceless.

Updated 20:47 - 7 Nov 2017 by Neil Coleman

Where next?

Mini Soccer heads into Winter Break The final session of the Academy’s mini soccer school before the winter break had some very excited visitors.
Mini Soccer OFF Youth Academy Mini Soccer has been postponed for Saturday 21st October.


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Sat 20 Oct
U12 (National League) Cookstown Youth
Cup 10:45
U14 (National League) Ridgeway Rovers
League 10:45
U15 (National League) Glenavon
Cup 10:45

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