Going Dutch

Forty-seven boys and four staff members travelled to the seaside resort of Noordwijk in Holland for a four day pre-season football tour at the start of the Christmas holidays. Between them, they played 17 football matches with local club teams and enjoyed a range of team-building activities.

One particular highlight was watching a Dutch Eredivisie (Premier league) match in Rotterdam. League leaders Feyenoord beat Vitesse Arnhem 3-1, whilst the boys enjoyed many trays of the Dutch delicacy, chips and gravy.  A training session with Ajax coaches, in the shadow of the Amsterdam Arena, got the players warmed up for a breathtaking tour of Holland’s largest stadium that plays home to both the national team and Ajax Amsterdam.

An evening of ten-pin bowling, and afternoons of go-karting, laser-tagging, canal-cruising and souvenir shopping in Amsterdam, made up the rest of the events but the real purpose of the trip was the football – and there was a lot of it!

With the U13 and U14 A and B teams each playing a fixture every day, there were too many goals, great tackles, dubious refereeing decisions and man-of-the-match performances to report. In short, the boys secured two wins, a draw and a loss against VV UNO, two wins and two losses against VV WVC, one win against Alphense Boys and four wins against US Gravelines in France on the way home.

The overall U14 Player of the Tour was Jonah Kershaw, with the U13 Player of the Tour being Harry Wardle. All of the boys deserve credit for their superb behaviour and sportsmanship on and off the pitch, and they secured some creditable results against some tricky Dutch club opposition, despite many of our boys having very heavy legs by the end of tour! The talent on show would suggest that 2017 will prove to be a successful season for all four teams.

Mr Morton, Tour Leader

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