U-17 team in final prep for World Cup qualifiers

| 12/07/2016
CNS Local Life

The Under-17 National Football Team prior to practice game last month with Cayman Brac FC  

(CNS): The Under-17 Boys National Football Team left today (12 July) for Sunrise, Florida, to take part in a final training camp in preparation for competing in Group 2 of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) World Cup qualifiers, which are scheduled for 20-24 July at the Truman Bodden Sports Complex in Grand Cayman. The 24 players and six staff will return on Monday, 18 July, two days before the Cayman Islands play their first game of the CFU under-17 tournament.

The 24 players on the team are Albertini Holness, Jayden Downey, Shawn Scott (from Cayman Brac), D’Andre Rowe, Rohelio Wright, Jose La Rosa-Ebanks, Francisco Murillo-Johnson, Devonte Morejon, Oladapo Bailey, Jabari Campbell, Gonzalo McLaughlin, Kion Parchmont, Jamaar Frederick, Kareem Foster, Rico Bodden, Trey Ebanks, Jalen Walters, Kameron Mendez, Corey Mellaneo, Alex Clarke-Ramirez, Daniel Manderson, Cody Ebanks, Jahrion Bodden and Javier Ardila.

Accompanying the players are head coach Ernie “Gillie” Seymour, assistant coach Ken Downey, assistant coach and manager Antwan Seymour, goalkeeper coach Luis Morejon, team physician Dr Verley Campbell and equipment manager Andrew Holness.

The team will be staying at a hotel that operates an adjacent fully equipped, first-class training facility. The fields are located on site and include top-level training space and a full-size pitch with spectator seating, a warm-up area and maintenance and storage area.

Staffing, goals, training aids and equipment are provided to all teams using the facility. Games can be arranged with club teams in the surrounding area.

The Cayman squad will undergo an intense seven days of physical and tactical training as the coaching staff will be selecting the final 20 players that will represent the Cayman Islands at the Under-17 World Cup qualifiers.

Former Jamaican and Cayman Islands national coach Carl Brown, who resides in nearby Fort Lauderdale, has arranged a number of practice games during the course of the week for the Cayman squad with club teams in the Fort Lauderdale and Sunrise areas.

Seymour said of preparations to date: “We have been working on improving aspects of the players’ games, fitness and tactics for the past few months and we will continue to push the players over the course of this week while in Florida.

“We want to simulate as best we can what the players will experience during the tournament, such as playing on Wednesday evening then resting on Thursday, playing on Friday evening, resting on Saturday and playing on Sunday evening and resting on Monday. The rest days will not be full rest days for the players as we will be doing some additional work on those days.”

The Ministry of Community Affairs, Youth and Sports has funded the training camp.

Along with regular training sessions as much as twice per day, preparations have included a five-day training camp during the Easter school break in March at the Annex Field, practice games against the visiting Under-15 academy teams from DC United and Orlando SC that participated in the recent Cayman Airways Invitational Youth Tournament in May, practice games against the Under-20 National Team that recently competed in the CFU World Cup qualifiers in Haiti, and a three-day training camp in Cayman Brac in June.

During the under-17 tournament, the Cayman team will play Aruba on Wednesday, 20 July, Puerto Rico on Wednesday, 22 July, and Haiti on Sunday, 24 July, with all matches starting at 7:30pm.

Winners from the first round of the qualifiers will advance to the final round, set for 18-25 September, with a chance to qualify for the CONCACAF Under-17 World Cup qualifiers in February 2017. Four countries from CONCACAF will qualify for the 17th edition of the FIFA Under-17 World Cup finals to be played in India in September and October 2017.

For further information on the CFU Under-17 World Cup qualifiers and how those interested can assist with the tournament, email Neil Murray or call him at 925-8793

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Category: Football, Sports

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