Coaches’ pride after Catterick Village U16s compete in Spain

Junior football team coaches have spoken of their pride after their club travelled to play in a tournament in Spain.

Catterick Village Junior Football Club’s U16s attended the 2023 Costa Daurada Cup tournament in Cambrills.

The annual tournament is one of the largest in Europe, and this year consisted of 103 boys teams and 48 girls teams from clubs around the world.

Catterick Village was knocked out at the quarter final stage of the event.

Coach Paul Hankin said: “The idea was always to give the boys an experience of a lifetime after giving service to the club from the age of seven up to 16, in the knowledge that many might not be with us next year when they go to college or enter the world of work.

“As long as they showed a good account of themselves the results didn’t matter but the team exceeded all expectations.

“We also wanted to create a legacy within the club so that every future u16 team had a chance to experience a European tournament too.”

Paul added: “The boys were impeccable both in their conduct and play and represented both our club in the highest manner.

“We were even the flag bearers at the head of the England group of teams in procession during the opening ceremony with other elite teams, including QPR behind us.”

After drawing their first match against San Marcial, Village won their second against Salou before suffering a first defeat against American Elite Academy and Football Scouting organisation, Futstar/XR Soccer.

They finished second in their group but were beaten 3-0 in the quarter finals by Spanish team  CF Martorell in the quarter finals.

Paul added: “As coaches, we couldn’t be prouder of them.

“The entire trip has surpassed any preconceived expectations we may have had and would recommend the experience to anyone, so much so that we are now looking into the possibility of our team returning in two years’ time to compete as u18s alongside our u16s, currently u14s.