Muscat Football Academy U12s and U14s excel at Abu Dhabi Cup

MUSCAT: Muscat Football Academy U12s have won the City Plate Silver tier trophy in the Abu Dhabi Cup, going undefeated en route to the final and winning in a tense penalty shoot-out. The team won three of its five games, drawing the other two, before Max Huysen saved the crucial kicks to seal victory.
Under-12 captain Safwan al Kharousi said, “Last year I don’t think we did so well, but we have improved a lot. We practiced more as a team and changed our tactics. This year we didn’t lose a match and I believe in my team to get even better. The experience has been great and given us a chance to meet people from different countries, which is amazing, and I look forward to taking part again next year.”
The Muscat Football Academy U14 team also excelled over the weekend, reaching the final in the Gold tier of their age group before narrowly missing out on the trophy by losing 1-0 to the academy side of CFR Cluj from Romania, a professional team currently leading the Romanian first league. To get to the final, the team had also remained unbeaten and emerged victorious over three teams from Manchester City.
Chuck Martin, Head Coach of Muscat Football Academy, said, “This was a fantastic achievement from both teams at the academy. The Under-12 team featured seven Omani players and this shows that they have developed well and are heading in the right direction to fulfil their dreams. Both teams have given a big boost for the academy. The teams are very special to me because I’ve coached some for four years, since the opening of the academy, and they have improved so much.”
“I can see some going all the way to becoming professionals. Winning the Under-12s and getting to the final in the Under-14 is great. I hope that the development continues and their progress moves up a level for next season. I believe they are a special bunch of players and I am hoping for bigger and better things, starting in two weeks with the Gulf Cup.”
In just its second year, the Cup offers young footballers the chance to take part in specialist coaching sessions with the overall winners receiving an all-expenses paid trip to the City Football Academy in Manchester, United Kingdom, where they could meet the stars of Manchester City’s first team, currently poised to win the English Premier League.
Each age group comprised 32 teams from around the world with nearly 1400 young footballers in Under-10, Under-12 and Under-14 age groups.
The Abu Dhabi Cup 2018, sponsored by Manchester City FC, Etihad and Visit Abu Dhabi promotes an active and healthy lifestyle while instilling life-long skills such as the importance of teamwork and discipline in youth.