The Junior Premier League season is almost upon us.
Torquay United Community Sports Trust have put in a great deal of work ever since our participation in the JPL was announced earlier this year. It reflects the desire from by TUCST and the Club to return youth football to the area, and to develop 1st team players of the future.
Some exciting news that we can announce now is that an U7s team has been added to our roster. They have been formed from TUCST’s skill centres in Plymouth and Torquay.
All age groups have been participating in friendly fixtures against some long-established Academies.
TUCST coach, Mickey Hunt, spoke to us about pre-season friendlies and the exciting weekend ahead.
“We have played against Southampton Academy, Exeter City Academy, Bristol City Academy, Newport County Academy, Chivenor, Peter Griffiths Academy (PG10). We also have Port Talbot and Tamworth coming up too,” said Mickey.
“Playing against Academies such as Bristol and Exeter is a big test for our players, but they have come through it well.”
All age groups have performed well in their fixtures so far, but the U8s have had some big results recently.
“They won both of their games by quite a margin. They beat Newport 10-1, and then followed that up with a 12-0 win.”
U7s to U11s (Yellows) are playing Chivenor this weekend, a North Devon Development Centre linked to Southampton Football Club. The U11s Yellows are a part of the JPL, but they haven’t got a fixture this weekend and will join the other age groups in playing Chivenor.
U11s Blue and above are playing in the JPL.
“It has been really, really positive from our point of view,” added Mickey.
“The performances and the attitudes of the players has been really promising. We have good times ahead”.
We wish all our teams the best of luck for their fixtures, and Mickey is hopeful that the teams will hold their own, but player development is the first aim.
“100% player development,” added Hunt.
“We want to produce players for the 1st team. Our job is to develop players for the long-term.
“They all play the same way. We all share the same philosophy. We play out from the back, play through the thirds, and look to break the lines,”
We’ll be adding more of the youth development to the website soon. In the meantime, you can find the JPL fixture here.
Teams & Coaches
U7s, U8s, U9s Mickey Hunt
U10s Dave Hedges
U11 Blue & Yellow – Craig Hutcheson & Marcus Thompson
12s Nathan Beech
U13s Michael Johnson
U14s Richard Cherry
U15s Danny Gaze
U16s Chris Hogg