Luganville supports youth growth

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Youth development remains a priority for the Luganville Football Association.

Late last month the new season of the Youth League launched with an impressive 12 girls teams participating across the U-12 and U-15 divisions, in addition to six female referees in the youth training group.

Charley Ulas is the president of youth football on the Luganville Football Association executive committee, and is overseeing the delivery of the competition at Luganville Soccer City Stadium.

“The first round of the league started the last week of April,” he said.

“We’ve been running this league for two to three seasons now and I think the quality of the players and teams this year is good.

“We are seeing investment like coaches going into schools, Just Play and Grassroots trainings and that is translating into us seeing a lot of improvement.

“I think we are also seeing greater motivation from teams and clubs because this year we were able to secure sponsors for prizes, like our main sponsor Classic Printers.”

“I think we are also seeing greater motivation from teams and clubs because this year we were able to secure sponsors for prizes, like our main sponsor Classic Printers.”

Ulas said one of the priorities is to see more girls participating in football, and working with local clubs as well as schools within the association’s catchment is helping to achieve those priorities.

The Luganville Football Association incorporates clubs from the Banks and Torres Islands, Sanma Province including Santo island, Malampa Province with Malekula island and Penama Province including Maewo island.

The league will run until the end of June, which Ulas said aligns with the school calendar.

“We like to finish the championship within the season, or school calendar, so we can do other competitions like a knockout. We already have one off-season tournament planned for July and probably will host another one in November.”

In addition, Ulas said the Vanuatu Football Federation is supporting an application for further funding of the Regional Technical Centre Academy, which is based in Luganville.

Luganville and its incorporated provinces have already proven the strength of local development on both a national and regional level.

“We had eight players go to the U-20 World Cup in Korea, and also our national league teams do well. We have established a youth programme and we will start to see more good results in the future.”

To learn more about the Classic Printers Youth League and Women’s Championship, visit their Facebook page: Luganville Football Association.

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