DIGICEL KICKSTART CLINICS REACH NEW LEVEL OF TALENT IN TRINIDAD & TOBAGO
Trinidad and Tobago’s aspiring young footballers impressed the Chelsea FC Foundation coaches as they displayed top footballing talent at the recently-held Digicel Kickstart Clinics.
Chelsea FC Foundation Senior International Development Officer and Digicel Kickstart Clinics Head Coach, David Monk, said; “The boys showed a strong command of the game, on and off the ball, impressive control and their technical abilities were remarkable. The level of talent has definitely improved since the last time the coaches visited Trinidad and Tobago – testament in part to this programme, I hope.”
Monk continued; “As we move through the clinics, each country tops the last. I was truly impressed with the technical abilities and high tempo the athletes played with and maintained throughout. They showed composure in defence, precision in their passes and clinical finishes from the attackers.”
Goalkeeping is a big part of the football tradition in Trinidad and Tobago. From the days of former national representative and goalkeeping legend, Shaka Hislop, the twin-island republic has been known to produce talented goalkeepers and this year, the young players at the Kickstart Clinics lived up to the billing.
A former goalkeeper himself, Monk added; “The goalkeepers at this year’s Clinics were agile and athletic and showed great composure when under pressure. One in particular, Alijah Shade, reminded me of the legendary goalkeeper, Shaka Hislop, with his agility, height and aerial saves.”
At the end of the clinics, Alijah Shade, John-Paul Rochford and Tyrell Emmanuel were selected to participate in the Academy later this year and will definitely make an impact, according to Monk.
The Chelsea FC coaches also made time to share tips and conduct a training session with all 15 players from the Special Olympics national football team that is set to compete in the World Special Olympics Summer Games in July. David Monk said; “It was a pleasure to work with the Trinidad and Tobago Special Olympics national team. They showed great fight and spirit and will be a force to be reckoned with at the World Games this summer.”