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‘An Italian dream’ comes true footballers

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The seven-month old SVG Youth Football Academy is already bearing fruit.

The academy had its international project ‘An Italian Dream’ come true. {{more}}

Two young footballers, Azinho Solomon and Harvey Derrick, both eleven years old, leave for Italy today for a two week training with Cagliari F.C.

Chairman and driving force of the academy, Ian Sardine will accompany them.

According to Sardine their selection was based on their academic performance as well as football skills.

“Very few players succeed in becoming professional players – and especially children need to understand that a good education has always complemented the ability to play football,” Sardine said

Sardine who has been in youth football for the past twenty years, said the project was not a one off.

“We want to repeat this project on a yearly basis to encourage our children to engage in sports and to study hard,” Sardine envisaged.

While in Italy the two youngsters will undergo training at the club’s youth centre, and will be exposed to new techniques blending with their skills honed on the local front.

Solomon, a striker who favours his left foot, is son of former national player Andre Sam. Solomon is hoping like his father to play football for SVG.

Derrick, a midfielder, hails from the Campden Park area.

The cost for the trio’s trip to Italy is borne by United Bank an Off Shore entity and Cagliari.

United Bank is the main financier of the academy.

The SVG Academy caters for youths from 5 to 16 years, both males and females, and apart from football, has an academic component headed by Gaylene Wickham.

At present the academy has 280 youths enrolled. The SVG-YFA operates in three locations- Kingstown, Layou and Campden Park.

Leon Wickham, Michael James, Verrol Henry, Kevin Richardson, Keith Ollivierre and Sardine are the main coaches working with the members of the academy.