On Saturday 4th August our U10s set off for Meggetland Sports Complex in Edinburgh to participate in the Edinburgh Cup. It was an early start for the squad as the coach departed the stadium at 6:30AM. There was an even earlier start for one of the players as he was up at 3:30AM to travel down from Portree….that is some commitment.
A short stop at Broxden Services to let the boys stretch their legs and let the coaches and parents travelling on the bus get a top up of coffee, then it was back on the road.
Next stop was Meggetland. We arrived at 10AM so after registering our team, it was a quick change for the players into their match strips and off to find our pitch for the day. A few detours later we arrived and set up our base for the day. We just had time for a quick warm up before our first fixture against Rangers.
The players were raring to go by this point (even after the early start). The duration of the games was 20 mins and during that period the young Staggies proved they were more than a match for Rangers, with both teams playing good football.
Time for a short break and an intake of jaffa cakes/jelly babies for some energy before the next match against St. Mirren. The boys started very brightly and scored a good team goal. Once again, the players showed that the travelling and early start didn’t bother them.
Our next fixture was another exciting one this time against Hearts, with our players linking up well once again to score a good goal. The players then showed that they can defend well both individually and as a unit, keeping another clean sheet.
LUNCH TIME - and we were off for the next four games - so this was an ideal opportunity for the players to have a bite to eat and chill out in the sun.
Break time over and it was onto our next fixture against Morton. After being off for so long the boys were a bit slow to start the game and found themselves a goal behind, but after some good defending there was a chance to break forward and counter attack, resulting in the ball ending up in the back of the net.
Our final fixture of the day was against the other of Glasgow’s giants…Celtic. Another tough test for us and boy did the players rise to the challenge. Some dogged defending early doors ensured that the final match was going to be a close contest. Our young players showed that they were more than capable of doing both their defensive and offensive duties to a good standard and we were unlucky not to score in our final match.
After the final whistle there was no time to hang around as we had to get across to the main stage for the presentation. Every player from every team that participated received a medal. It was great to see all our players with smiles on their faces as we got called up on stage to receive the medals. However, I think the boys need to work on their “Floss”!
There was a 2009 (U10) Player of the Tournament Award and it was fantastic to see one of our own players receive this award after catching the eyes of the event organisers. Well done Joe (Coyle). This was the icing on the cake to of a good day playing against top level oppostion.
Presentation over it was a quick change and back on the bus as we headed for home (after a McDonald’s stop of course). The bus arrived back at the club at 8:30PM – it was certainly a long day, but it was WELL WORTH IT!!
This was a fantastic day for our players and an invaluable experience, from the early start, travelling as a squad on the bus and getting to play such good opposition. The players conducted themselves extremely well and were a credit to Ross County Football Club and their parents! I would like to take this opportunity to thank the parents who travelled down to support the boys. I would also like to thank the coaches for all their hard work.
Charlie McPhee - Head of Children's Academy Programme