Archive for April 8th, 2009
Football, the next generation, in Tenerife

As many still slumbered in their beds, or shovelled down belly buster breakfasts around the cafes and bars of Tenerife, future football stars were gathering at Tenerife Top Training in La Caleta for the week long, IFA Kastler Football Academy.

With tennis and padel tournaments also going on, there was plenty for me to focus on for the new T3 Blog site and a chance to meet some ex football players passing on skills to kids between 5 and 17.

Thomas Kastler used to play in the German Third Division, and Samantha Britton (above) is a former Arsenal and England player, who now works at the Britannia school here in Tenerife. I was surprised to find that the young players included a red hot 9 year old prospect from Finland and a 5 year old hopeful from the Czech Republic, hands off Sir Alex. The Academy have scouting links to several big European teams, Eric the Finnish whizz is off to Barcelona soon for a weeks trial.

Samantha was clearly enjoying herself and the young players were responding well, the 35 plus players each day have been all boys, even though the academy was open to all. The former Arsenal star is keen to help develop the standard of the many female teams in Tenerife.

I managed a few words with Bernd Kabau, one of the T3 tennis coaches, and admired the serving technique of his female pupil. Tenerife Top Training has the only 2 clay courts in Tenerife. Thankfully noone asked me to pick up a racquet to show my lack of skills, but I am slightly tempted to try Padel, very popular here, a mix between squash and tennis – although it might take a bit more than some Robinsons Barley Water to revive me after a game.