We are pleased to announce that we have been asked to take over the youth teams of Century Park FC from the age group 15-19 years old. They had no choice to stop the program for them due to field restrictions. Once we were asked we immediately told them that we saw this as a unique chance to offer a home for the youth players at the Shanghai Lions FC.
We plan to train twice a week on Tuesday and Thursday and will enter the teams in the SPL U16 & SPL Senior League and if we have enough players we will also continue to play in the SPL U19 League. Azzeddine our senior head coach will be in charge of the trainings together with another specialized youth coach. Our trainings will take place in Jinqiao and we are happy to help the young players in their football development.
This age group is very important as for most of the players it will be only a few more years before they will make the switch from being a junior player to senior player. As well some players will have the intention to try and get scholarships once they go to college and we are motivated to help them achieve their dreams !
For new players who are interested to play in the Shanghai Lions youth teams and like to be part of our program, please contact us at email@example.com
We are already excited for the new season in August !
Freek, Shanghai Lions FC President
Azzeddine, Shanghai Lions FC Head Coach
Last weekend the SPL organized a football festival in cooperation with That’s Magazine and the Goldenbridge Company in Green City Jinqiao. That’s magazine organized the Battle of the Bands competition where High School students from all over Shanghai showed their musical talents live on stage. We, as SPL, organized a mini world cup tournament for over 400 boys and girls. On Saturday we had 24 teams of the younger ones aged 4-8 years old. The weather was perfect with clear blue sky and the fields were full with supporting parents and family ! Everybody enjoyed the games and when the boys and girls after the games were paraded to the stage it was all smiles and proud parents taking pictures. Every player got a medal and became a world champion.
On Sunday the weather was perfect again and we had 12 U10 teams in the morning. For them they also received a medal on stage and they were happy to pose for all the parents ! The group were the older ones and we organized a 7 aside tournament for U12 and U14 teams. England and Portugal were the winners of their groups and everybody of the total 8 teams went home with a nice cup ! The day ended with the older players U16 showing of their skills ! What stood out was the fair play and the speed of the games ! In the end France proved to be too strong and took the Cup home !
With no injuries and plenty of happy players its was a day to remember ! The SPL thanked the coaches and parents and referees and That’s Magazine and the Goldenbridge Company for the wonderful two days !
It was our fourth game in the SPL U19 league and we were up against Dulwich Earthquakes ! It didn’t look good at the beginning as with 20 minutes before kick off we only had 4 players arrived ! Heavy traffic on the Friday evening was the culprit but some how and with the help of the referee who also arrived late we got all our players ready. In the first period of the game both teams played attacking forward and created some opportunities we had some great build ups and crosses fm our upcoming righ defender Yukki and Francesco got the best opportunity standing face to face with the Dulwich goalie but he shot over. It looked like we would go into half time 0-0 but in the very last minute a miscommunication between our goalie and last defender gave Dulwich an early Christmas present. In the second half our plan was to play with more forward pressing in order to force their defenders to make a mistake as well. However we ran into trouble when we lost the ball on the right and Dulwich scored with a hard strike. We tried to keep our heads up and came close a few time but while looking for the goal we got punished for leaving our defense exposed and Dulwich scored the 0-3 with 25 minutes to go.
What happened next was quite amazing as Lions players decided to fight instead of giving up. We picked up the pace of the game and produced several deadly counter attacks. Felix brought us back in the game with two goals after great build up from the middle. When we got a free kick at a dangerous spot Felix curled the ball in the top corner to make it 3-3. The Lions didn’t stop here and it was Tevin with 5 minutes to go who scored the winner. A great achievement of a well composed and mature Lions Youth team !
Our Lions U19 team is playing in the new SPL U19 league every Friday evening. We got our second game last Friday and were up against Aksil who are known for their great pool of talented players.
We got 4 players on a China week this week and its always worrisome for a coach to receive disturbing text messages a few hours before kick off. This time the text was “ we are vomiting and sick due to our China week” we cannot play. Luckily our Captian Oleg was still ok but he said he cannot be on time as the flight back to Shanghai was delayed.
So we were thin in the line up and needed to put some players on positions they were not familiar with. In the first 30 minutes Aksil dominated the game and were very dangerous and aggressive on the flanks and their crosses caused our defenders trouble. They could have scored a few goals for sure but in the end the damage was only one goal. As we saw them missing the opportunities we grew in confidence and started to play on the counter attacks. It was one of them that gave us the equalizer when Felix ran one on one towards the keeper he saw his effort hit the post but Bank was fast enough to react and he scored the 1-1.
In the second half Oleg arrived and it lifted our spirits. The half time talk focused on showing confidence against your opponent and force them to make some mistakes while putting more pressure on them. Aksil had to defend a bit deeper and the Lions were looking for the break through. It came through the middle after good combinations Felix finished it this time to put us in front ! Next goal Felix was the provider through the middle as he found Rick on full speed who with one move found himself in front of the keeper and didn’t hesitate to score the 3-1. Credit to Aksil that they didn’t give up here but instead they started to attack more and more to get back in the game. They got rewarded on a corner with a good header 3-2. In the end the Lions defense stayed firm and organized and good goal keeping by Riccardo who saved a great free kick at the end gave us all three points.
It was a great experience for the U19’s and it will help them to mature as a football player to play 90 minutes 11 aside games / Mandela Aksil’s coach gave some kind comments after the game as he was impressed with our youngster and thought they played like “real lions” !
That was awesome to hear and a great way to end a great game of football in Shanghai !
We are pleased to announce the our young Lions will enter the newly set up SPL U19 league. The games will be held each Friday from 1800-2000 at the Concordia field and Century Park and BISS Puxi. For now there are 7 teams in the league (ebbe sand/aksil/century park/ Japanese school / san jose earth quakes / biss puxi and the Lions. Our first game will be this Friday @ Concordia School / Kick off will be at 1800 / We wish them good luck in the League / Cheer Freek
Welcome back and unfortunately for you the holiday is over ! We are looking forward to another exciting season for the Lions !
We plan to have our regular trainings on Wednesdays 1800-2000 at the Century Park field and our idea is to start on Sept 16. We are looking at the possibilities for a 11 side U19/18 league as we believe that at your age group you need to play much more 11 aside games to gain more experience and to become a better and stronger player so that you can easily move to the senior leagues in the years to come. We will give the opportunities to play with our adults teams and we will enter the young lions in the adult tournaments to give you more experience.
We lost a few players as they finished their studies and some moved to another country however some new faces already said they wanted to join the young Lions / If you know new players please ask them to come and try because to run the season we will need a base group of about 20-25 boys and girls to cover the field rental so that we can keep the fee the same as last year !
Looking forward to see you soon on the pitch ! Your Coaches / Freek / Azzedine / Garret / Adam
We are pleased to announce that Zoely the daughter of our legend Bob was voted best woman player of the U8 tournament at the American School ! Zoely is coached by Azzeddine and its great to see that the hard work at the trainings paid off ! Well done Zoely you are already better than your father ! Keep playing !
It was a late game for the U17 with a 1800 kick off at the Shanghai Stadium. With a few players missing we started strong with a lot of ball movement and passes. The Germans didn’t have an answer to our possession play and all the could do was defend. It was a strong move by Calum on the left and his cross found the incoming Rick who could easily score from close range. Actually it was a copy of last week goal versus Aksil. It was Francesco who saw his strike flying into the top corner to make it 2-0 for the Lions. In the second half we tried to play the same but it was hard to find a hole in the german wall. Instead they German’s scored with a header. Bank our striker came close with a blast at the post but in the end it stayed 2-1 for the Lions. Great win and we are looking forward to our next game on April the 11th !
Usually the President likes to take control of everything but this time he had no chance as control was taken over by the Lions players who decided it was time to organize a surprise party for his 51st birthday ! He was stunned when he expected to have a small dinner with the Lions management but instead was brought to a full house at our new sponsor La Creperie ! Both his wife Yukari and son Rick were part of the complot and managed to keep the surprise a secret until the end. The President was very happy to see so many Lions present and when he received a beautiful painting of our first SIFL title celebration he was clearly touched ! The Party moved to Unico where Lions Deejay Kevin and banana act Garret made sure everybody could party unit late ! It showed that the Lions are on big family and the president was a very happy Man ! Thank you all !
On Sunday the Lions needed to get back to winning in order to stay close to the top in the league. Japan was the opponent and they were desperate to get their first points of the season. Lions started well dominated the game with possession. However a long ball flew in the Lions goal after nobody could clear it ! This was the wake up call and soon after we equalized by thomas just before half time we took the lead after a good combination play ending with a goal by Benji. In the second half we controlled the game and soon got our reward another goal by Benji 3-1. After this Japan kept fighting and the Lions failed to score more goals. In the end Japan got one back but the Lions took all three points.
After this game we had a special game organized for our U18 team as we let them play against a mix of veterans and senior player. It was really appreciated that so many Lions stayed back to play against our youngsters after they already had a game in the legs ! In the first half the youngster were a bit afraid especially because the seniors took an early lead but the managed to score a goal back thru Thai Striker Bank, 3-1 at half time and in the second half the young Lions played good football and proved not to be a walk over. Francesco our Italian striker scored a nice goal to make it 3-2 and the final goal of the game came from Russian Max to make it 3-3. A draw was perfect as Max Kirby played against his son Calum and both could live with a draw. It was a great experience for the young Lions !
As if this wasn’t enough for the weekend we had three veteran Lions running the Shanghai half marathon / Fred and Fred clocked a decent 1.47 and Max 2.01 ! Well done !
We have two big games ahead of us this upcoming weekend ! On Saturday we play Re-united and on Sunday the Cowboys ! Let’s prepare well and all come to the training on Wednesday !
Due to the working Saturday there were no SIFL games this weekend but we took the chance to organize a game for the Lions Youth versus the Japanese school. The Japanese were playing their traditional counter attacking football. There were plenty of goals partly because the referee didn’t know about the offside rule. In the end a good practice game for both teams.
On Sunday the veterans saw their game against Scotland canceled by the Scotts this was the second time and not good for the moral. Luckily Super 48 saw their opponent also not turning up and we played a great friendly against them. The final score was 7-2 for the Lions and Jeff out of all people scored a hat-trick. A times the Lions Legends played good combination football and the game was a good preparation for the Master Cup on December 6th. This cup is organized by Super 48 and runs its second edition. The Lions aim is to get the Masters Double this season !
After the veteran game it was time for the SPL Lions to play Super 48 as well ! An emergency chat by Simon on Saturday asking players to be available to play saw a tsunami of “Not available” replies. I hope that this was an exceptional case and like to remind all the Lions that our strength has always been the willingness to help each other in case of need !
This time the help came from the Veterans Fred / Jeff / Freek / Dan, who already had a game in their legs and were asked to play another full game !
The strong wind was an important factor and we needed to score in the first half with the win in our backs. We came close a couple of times but the final finish was not there. Going into half time 0-0 we knew it would be hard with the strong wind against us. Super 48 is a much improved side and they kept bringing the balls into our box for us we could only sit deep and play on the counter. A smart move by Terao resulted in a hand ball in the box and the penalty was converted by Dave who kept his cool and shot the ball in the left top corner. After that Super 48 got a couple of free kicks and over 10 corners and one brilliant safe by Dan and 4 yellow cards for the Lions and finally the final whistle, 1-0 win ! This game was won pure on character and spirit !
We organize a friendly game on our training field this coming Wednesday against a Chinese team who likes to join the SPL and it will be good for us to get some match fitness after the long holiday break.