Easter Trip To Feira, Portugal 2017
As part of the continual development of English roller hockey we organised a trip to Feira, on the same basis as those we have completed over the last seven years, to carry on with the preparation of various age groups and culminating in our participation of the Feira Easter Tournament.
The trip was split into two groups, Project Vision 2020 and Project 2017, involving a total of 89 people including players, staff and parents.
Project Vision 2020 consisted of 30 players born between 2004 – 2007. This group was split into one team of Under 11’s and two teams of Under 13’s. We arrived in Feira on Sunday 9th April and returned to England on Sunday 16th April.
Project 2017 consisted of the Under 17’s Reduced Squad with a total of 16 players, as part of their preparation for this year’s European competition. They arrived on Wednesday 12th April and returned to England on Tuesday 18th April.
The main objective on this trip was to participate in the Easter Tournament in Feira which is jointly organized by Feira Council, Club Academico da Feira and the NRHA.
With the exception of the tournament days, Friday 14th and Saturday 15th April, both Projects received two training sessions a day followed by a friendly game in the evening for each level. The objectives were achieved regarding the player’s tactics and overall fitness.
All the teams performed well in the tournament with every game being very competitive against strong/quality Portuguese teams.
Two of our teams reached the finals, Under 13’s A Team and Under 17’s.
The Under 17’s won the tournament for their age group playing two hard games, when we consider that our players were born in 2001/2 and were facing players born in 2000/1.
In the entire tournament we had five teams competing as U11’s, U13’s A, U13’s B, U15’s and U17’s, playing in a total of twelve games.
The Under 11’s team lost their first game on penalties (2-2 final score) and then won their second game 2-1 to finish 3rd.
The Under 13’s A team lost their first game 2-0 and won the second game 8-0 to gain a place in the final which they lost 4-0.
The Under 13’s B team lost all three of their games, however the last game was lost on a penalty shoot-out. All our players in this team were born in 2005 whilst the majority of the players in the other three teams were born in 2004.
The Under 15’s team lost their first game 1-4 and then won the second game 2-1 to finish 3rd.
The Under 17’s team played the last game of the tournament against Academico do Porto beating them 2-1 to win the trophy.
As a final remark, I have to say that these trips are proving that the preparation strategy we have been employing and improving on over the last nine years are succeeding in making our teams more competitive.