Youth team enjoyed five-a-side football

five-a-sideIt was a beautiful day last Saturday clear skies but the temperature was a bit high close to 30 degrees. We came up with the idea to have a small mini five-a-side football at Qi Yi among ourselves! Total we had 4 teams with one team consisting of coaches & parents. Each match was 5 minutes and it was a joy to watch. There were a lot of fun moments and the speed of the matches was very high. Overall it was a great event and we plan to organize another round of five-a-side maybe against the Lions Senior players or Legends!

Cheers
Freek

Friendly game for our youth against YKFC

Friendly gameThis friendly game against YKFC was a little special as it had been several months since we last played 11 aside due to Covid-19!  However, we have been training for a couple of weeks so it was a nice test to see how do we stand compared to December where we were playing our best level this season.

In the first half, we were wondering why we played so slow and without conviction! Nobody said a word in the field and we couldn’t see a smile on the players’ faces. I guess it was a combination of the long break not playing on a full-size pitch combined with the very hot and humid weather… We took a 2-0 lead both goals from Jason back from the USA in our squad. YKFC managed a few times to get through the middle and had a few shots on goal but they were easy catches for Yu Xuan our stand in goalie!

We took our half time talk to get our team back on track and told the players foremost to enjoy the match and smile and have fun. It worked as the second half was a good display of teamwork and good combination! Jason quickly scored a third and Yuv showed us how easy it is to score with one move to set him free and he put the ball in the far corner in the net! YKFC did get a goal back but deserved also a compliment as they only had 11 players which is hard in the weather conditions and the gave us good opposition!

Overall we were happy with this friendly game… especially because we had a good mix of players with young and more experienced and there was good teamwork/spirit on the pitch. Step by step we will get our fitness and our field playback. We will look for more 11 aside match opportunities to play as that’s what we need now!

It was great to see so many parents come out and support the players! We appreciate that a lot! Of course, we’d like to tell our youth teammates abroad who are blocked overseas for now that we miss you guys a lot and hope that you soon can return to play with the Lions again!

 

See you all on Friday at the training!   

 

Cheers
Patrick, Nick, Freek & Azz

Youth are back to training

back to trainingWe were so happy to see most of our youth players back to training last Friday 🙂 Some parents even came out to support far away in Putuo!

We had a friendly match versus J-Academy and the pitch size was a bit strange as it was 9 vs 9 with 7 aside goals… However, the most important for us was the be able to be back on the field and smell the grass! We had 12 players with Mathew helping out as goalie as Koki is still in Japan and couldn’t come back. Kevin has a blister during the warming up so not a lot of options to change the team. We started well against Juventus and the game was tight for most of the time both sides had chances but missed the target no surprise after such a long time not being able to play! In the second half, we also played well but we could see the impact on our players of being at home and not being able to play for such a long time and Juventus seemed to be more fit and took advantage of that!

We will work on that in the coming weeks and will get the players back in shape and mentally good condition step by step as what is happening around the world, of course, has an impact on each and every one! As the Concordia field is not available and most schools are still closed we booked Qi Yi field for 8 weeks every Friday evening starting this Friday 1830-2030! Later when we see the development of the players we can add a second training day but we like to rebuild step by step! So we hope all our youth players will come to the training on Friday and we will help them to get back their fitness and positive mind!

We will look for friendly matches and if the schools would reopen we can also restart league matches! For the older youth, they can continue to train with the seniors and will be selected for senior matches! For the players who unfortunately could not make it back yet we hope you can all come back in the near future we are all waiting for you! For now, that’s Paris, Koki, Casey, Alvaro, Nikita.

Also, Yuma-san will not return because his parents moved back to Japan… Farewell, my friend! We will miss you very much! You are and will be an incredible player and remember “once a Lion always a Lion”! So good luck in Japan and anytime you are back in Shanghai you can play for the Lions!

See you all on Friday ! 18:30 at Qi Yi!

Cheers
Freek, Nick, Pat & Azz

U18 shown great fighting spirit versus Aksil

We knew it was going to be a hard match vs. Aksil as our U18 squad is currently having several players who are only 13-14 years old… This being a challenge, it’s good to play against older players so you can learn and see what you still need to work on and improve as a young player! Our game plan was defensive first to make sure we control the midfield and we left Paris our new striker upfront.

We thought he scored the 1-0 in the first 5 minutes but his great placed effort went just wide. We had a few more chances but also were caught out a few times on corners for us where they got the ball first as most of them were taller than our players and the countered very fast. It was a free-kick for them which gave them a 1-0 lead. Soon, while we were trying to build up from our defense we gave them another goal. As it was still early in the game but we were showing some cracks in our team as we focused on the negatives more and forgot about the good things we could do in the match! So with 10 minutes to go in the first half we found ourselves 3-0 down after we couldn’t defend their shot well… it was superb to see the team stand up instead of giving up and they played their best 10 minutes of the match. Paris nicely set up by our midfield players brought us back to 1-3 and a great build-up from our defense on the right with Matt who found Henry who gave a super pass to Paris to make it 2-3 going into the break for half time!

During the half time talk, we asked more effort from all of our players and asked them to step up! We got a few opportunities to level the game but a superb strike of the Aksil player from outside the box put us behind again. In the next 20 minutes, we lost control of the match and Aksil had several shots on target. Kokki our goalie was alert and saved us wherever he could. On the counters, we tried our luck and after a good combination in the midfield they found Yuma-san in the box who with one quick move according to him was fouled “clear penalty”! Mathew Blisset stood up to take the responsibility as one of the older players and he put us back in the game 3-4! With only a few minutes left we kept showing our Lions spirit and were fighting very every ball and all the team effort got rewarded in the very last minute of the match when on the break Yuma and Paris found Daniel who put the ball with a small touch at for the right end of the goal !!

It was a great match to end 4-4 and all of our players learned a lot today but what stood out was we never give up mentality as it was amazing to come back twice from far behind! It was nice to see so many parents and family come out to watch the match despite the very cold weather and we appreciate that very much !! Well done Lions what a great come back and team effort!

Very Happy!
Pat, Nick, Azz & Freek

U16 beat YKFC before Christmas

christmasFor this U16 last game of the year before Christmas, we had Julia and Alvaro missing versus YKFC… It meant that some of the players were asked to step up and lead the team in the right direction. In the first part of the game, we focused on defense first and good build-up from the back to the midfield players and create opportunities from the flanks. YKFC did have a strategy and game plan for us which was to sit deep and defend with the whole team… In other words “parking the bus”. It worked well for them however whenever they had a goal kick the coach asked them to build up from the back instead of the long balls and that was good for us as once they gave the first ball wide we pressured them in the corner with our attackers and midfield players. We scored the 1-0 with 15 minutes played by a free-kick from Daniel on the right side who found the head from David who with his new hair scored with a good header away from the keeper! We stayed compose and were waiting for our next chance which was scored by Matt after he was faster in reaction to surprise the YKFC keeper after a good pressing form our players! However two minutes later, they scored as we struggled to clear their high balls. In the last minute of the first half, we got a great combination in the midfield with Yuma-san giving the final pass to Daniel who didn’t hesitate to put the ball in the far corner!

We went in the dressing room 3-1 up but had some hard talks as we needed to improve in defense and we asked some players to step it up!

It was amazing to see the whole team transform into a superb teamwork display where all of the players stayed in their positions and executed the 1 or two touches which we have done at training week in and week out! We created several opportunities with great build-ups between 4-5 players and on both sides of the field and whenever YKFC did come close to the goal we had several midfielders and defenders to drop back to make sure no danger for Kokki-san! Our fourth goal was very nice with 3-4 quick combinations on the right side and Daniel blasting the ball in the net with his left foot from the middle of the box! Matt was unlucky to see his nice strike hit the crossbar and in the end, David got a second goal with a great strike as well to make the final score 5-1!

We went back to the dressing room after the match and gave compliments to all players today as it was a really good team performance and we were very happy with the way we played football!

 

Well done Lions and a good way to end 2019! However, we are not done yet as we will have our Christmas event on the 14th of December. No training next week but we see you all next Saturday! Also, it was Nick’s 31th birthday… So we took a video for him. Happy birthday, Nick!!!

Happy Christmas
Pat, Nick, Freek & Azz

U16 finish 2nd in 2019 Green City Cup

2019 Green City CupIt was a good turn up for the 2019 Green City Cup today and we like to thank the parents who came to support as well! We had to play three matches in a mini-competition. Our first match was against DEQ with Yu Xuan in goal and he actually made two very good saves but it was not enough to give us the victory as in this match we gave the goals away to DEQ and lost 2-1. However in the second match against Stoke with David in goal we changed our mentality and started to fight for every single ball and each and every player we brought in did the same so it was super team performance and we beat them 3-0. In our last game against the Jaguars we were going for the clean sheet and tried to score fast but in the first half it was not easy as we were impatient and let them come back from our 1-0 lead to make it 1-1 however in the second half we played good football again with a lot of good combinations and plenty of opportunities created by ourselves we scored 4 goals in the second half and could have been more ! Overall we are happy today with the team spirit and the way we played as a team everybody did his best to contribute! So well done Lions next time we go for the first place!

See you all on Wednesday at the training

Cheers
Pat, Nick, Azz & Freek

Lions lose 2-5 in 1st game of SPL U18 league

SPL U18 leagueFor the 1st game of the season 2019/2020 in the SPL U18 league, our young Lions were up against DEQ U18. We knew it wouldn’t be easy, but we started the match positively with the older players guiding the younger ones and trying to play like in our training. Unfortunately, Til got injured just before the match so we had to move a bit around in the line-up…

In the first half, the work rate was high. We got a couple of corners and Alvaro finally gave us the lead 1-0. Unfortunately, we gave away 2 goals to let DEQ come back into the match… Sometimes, it’s better to clear the ball instead of finding a solution and play short… This is part of the learning experience and it will be remembered. Our 2nd goal for the 2-2 came was a perfect free-kick from Julia on Alvaro’s head… With a few minutes to go before half time, DEQ got lucky again as we gave the ball away too easily… 2-3 for DEQ.

In the second half, we made a couple of changes and the intensity picked up. We created a couple of good chances… The best with Ryu but unfortunately he couldn’t finish it! Half-through we faced bad luck and stop the match for a while as David was knocked down in a challenge. As it was a head injury we didn’t want to take any risk and sent him to the hospital to make sure everything was Ok. While writing this, he is still doing some tests in the hospital… Of course, we and the opponent wish him a well and prompt recovery. After this, it was a little hard for our young Lions coming back into the game and DEQ scored 2 more goals to make it 2-5 as the final score.

 

This is only the 1st game of  SPL U18 league and we all know that the season is long. With many youngsters in our squad, we can be positive about this match as most of the goals we conceded today were avoidable. What’s important is to learn from these mistakes and progress through the season.

 

Cheers
Freek

Matty Ward moving back to England

Matty WardMatty Ward is an exceptional youth player who played both in the youth & the senior Lions’ teams. During these last 2 years, he won multiple awards such as Top Scorer & Best SPL Young Player. He stood-out with his determination to improve himself whenever he was on the field either at the training or at the matches. We wish him success in England and hopefully, he can bring his football career to the next level!

I have known Matty for 4 years now and he has been a real pleasure to coach. He gained a lot in his mental and physical development and I know he still has more to give. Thank you and I wish you all the best in the future !
Nick

The first time I met Matty it was when our friend Christian decided to promote him to the senior team of Century Park. A little boy that had a good touch with the ball. After being his coach for more than 2 years I had the pleasure to see him grow quickly. I hope I have helped him in some ways. And the best part for me was to actually play with him in the games and watch him do what he does the best. Please don’t forget us Matty and remember you are always welcome here!
Azzeddine

Matty Ward statistics

Best wishes to you Matty
Freek on behalf of all the Lions family!

Join Shanghai Lions Youth Academy

Lions Youth Academy

A new season is around the corner and we are always excited to restart after the long summer break. As every year, we will welcome new faces and our first training of season 2019/2020 will start on 21st of August 2019 at the Concordia International School field from 19:00 to 21:00.

What sets Lions youth academy apart from the others is that we are a club and give opportunities for players to play at a higher level. Good U15 can play with the U18 squad and good U18 players can play with the senior team.

For the training(s), we have youth players from 13-18 years old playing together in one group. It makes younger players understand what they still need to learn to improve. It also gives older players a sense of responsibility over the younger ones to help them become a better player. For the new season 2019/2020, we already got a few request to start a younger age group… If we can get a few more requests, we will start a 9-12 years old age group !

If you are interested to join Lions youth academy, you can download the form below (click the form), file it and send it back to info@shanghai-lions.com. Any question on your side ? Just send us an email… We usually reply pretty fast.

 

General information

  • No trial needed if you are a boy or girl aged 13-18 years old
  • Get trained by Shanghai’s leading football coaches
  • Training twice a week on full size pitch at Concordia International School located at 999 Mingyue Road, Jinqiao, Pudong, Shanghai
    • Wednesdays from 19:00 to 21:00
    • Fridays from 19:30 to 21:00
  • 11 aside matches on Saturdays

Latest News of the Football Youth Academy

[Read more]

Cheers
Coach Nick, Azz, Freek & Patrick

Youth team had a great end of season event during dragon boat festival

dragon boat festivalWe took advantage of the dragon boat festival and the good weather at the same time. We got a great location at the Donjiao state guest house where we booked to BBQ pitch next to a small soccer field! We got great catering from Yasmin’s Steak House and plenty of ice-cold drinks. Almost every player made it and we were pleased to have many parents showing up as well! The evening ended with an Oscar type nomination where the envelopes of each category were opened by the parents.

  • Best Goalkeeper Noel
  • Best Defender George
  • Best Midfielder Julia
  • Best Attacker Gordon
  • Top Scorer Matty
  • Most Assist Jason
  • Most Improved Paul
  • Most Unlucky David
  • Best Hair Cut Matthew

The Icing on the cake was our U18 Championship Trophy which was celebrated with everybody!

 

Great end of a great season! We hope to see you all back after the summer break!

 

Cheers
Freek, Nick & Azz

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