August 2013: International CONACAF tournament for U-152 August 2013
CSA players in Curaçao national selection U-15 to CONCACAF U-15 Championship 2013
In August 2013, the CONCACAF, the soccer federation of North and Middle America and the Caribbean, organized the first edition of the CONCACAF U-15 Championship in the Cayman Islands. The Curaçao soccer federation is a member of CONCACAF and was also invited with a team.
Within the partnership between Curaçao Soccer Academy (CSA) and FFK (Curaçao Soccer Federation) it was agreed that CSA would be responsible for the national selection in the age category that is trained by CSA. The CSA has a young U-15 team and director Hans van Elden wanted to use this championship to have this team gain international experience. Earlier, Van Elden had agreed to participate in the RKTVC/PSV tournament in the Netherlands that, unfortunately took place simultaneously with the CONCACAF U-15 Championship. Together with the FFK is was agreed to complete ‘Team Cayman’ with U-15 players from the Curaçao youth competition.
The preparation period was quite short (5 weeks) but after a talent scout in the middle of the summer holiday, training was started under the guidance of Mau Maria and Jhonny Godfried, both CSA coaches. Nine players from CSA and nine players from the local competition trained three times a week with full dedication and left for the Cayman Islands on August 18th. The program included games against Guadeloupe, St. Martin, St. Kitts, and Honduras.
Already during the first game against Guadeloupe (6-0) it became clear that this championship would be too hard for the Curaçao selection. As first-year U-15, some of the players were physically lighter than the players of the other teams in the pool. On top of that, this selection had only been playing together for a month. The team also lost against St. Kitts and St. Martin, and against Honduras, the winner of the tournament, the final result was 5-0.
Nevertheless, Hans van Elden had anticipated these results. “Of course, you know that there’s little chance at winning with such a young team – most of the other teams played with 2nd year U-15 players and at this age that makes for quite a difference. However, for us it is most important that our players gained international experience. At CSA we aren’t focussed on short-term success but on the development of potential top-players.”
St Martin-Curacao 4-1
St. Kitts-Curacao 4-2