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Promising U12 return home

Author: Kelly Abale | Published: Tuesday, September 3, 2019

U12 team pose for picture at JIA unpon arrival from Seoul on Tues, Sept. 3, 2019 | Credit | Kelly Abale/Eye Radio

The U12 team return to the country Tuesday afternoon after participating in the International Youth Tournament in South Korea.

Invited by the South Korean Government, the U12 performed to the expectations of South Sudanese, winning five out of the seven games they played.

South Sudan young Stars beat Duson China U-12 3-2 in their first game of the tournament, but they then went on to lose 2-0 to South Korea U-12.

After that loss, they beat Australia U-12 4-1, after which they lost 3-2 to the Japanese U-12 with a compulsory friendly match, thumped Anyang Seoul U12 8-0 in an international friendly.

The team earned an invitation by the South Korean Parliament before trashing Seoul Foreign International School U12 by 11 goals to one.

Under the guidance of former national team coach Bilal Felix, the team comprised mostly of players from the Juba-based Young Star Academy.

Speaking on arrival at the Juba International Airport, the team captain said they were proud to have represented the nation.

“We are very happy and proud for having represented our country in South Korea,” Said Emmanuel Nadir.

“We know we didn’t win the trophy but since they invited us again next year, we shall go and try bring the cup back home.”

He also reaffirmed the belief within the team to one day be the stars of the country and bring joy to the faces of South Sudanese.

“I also have the hope that this team will make the country proud in the future if we are maintained together as a team,” Nadir added.

For his part, the President of South Sudan Football Association (SSFA), Francis Amin Michael, said it’s important to start developing the young players from the grassroots.

“We keep promoting grassroots development because that’s where we shall get better results in the future,” Amin asserted.

He further added that next year they, as SSFA, will take both the under 12 and under 15 teams to South Korea:

“Next year, we shall hopefully take two teams, U-12 and U-15, because we are now having all the ages for the national teams.”

South Sudanese U-12 were the only team from Africa that took part in the International Youth tournament which also attracted teams from Europe and Asia.

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