The young budding players from the Ron La Forest Soccer Coaching Academy received words of advice from some of the country’s sporting icons Hasely Crawford, Everald ‘Gally’ Cummings and Kenwyne Jones when the school held its end of year function on Saturday at the Nelson Mandela Park, St Clair.
Crawford, the country’s first Olympic Gold medallist encouraged the players to work hard, saying there is no benefit without hardwork.
Crawford, who had his Olympic medal of 1976 with him on display, also encouraged youngsters to work towards having a proper diet, saying it can adversely affect their health.
Jones, who recently called it quits from all football, called on parents to support their lads in whatever field of endeavour they chose.
It was actually this support that help Jones move from youth football to international status where he represented English clubs Sunderland, Stoke City, Cardiff City, Bournemouth AFC, Southhampton and Sheffield Wednesday among others.
Gally urged the young players to be respectful to those in authority, particularly referees. And he called on local football administrators to select La Forest as a coach on the country’s technical staff.
“Gally” who took the “Strike Squad” to within a point of qualifying for the 1990 World Cup in Italy said if coaches are being chosen based on their achievements then La Forest, who is called the professor of coaching at his club Hydro Tech Guaya United, should be considered.
Under La Forest the Guayaguayare men copped the Caribbean Football Trust League (CFTL) League Cup and League titles in the T&T Super League. Cummings said La Forest’s return to his young players was a show of humility that is needed by all coaches locally.
The young players were engaged in football matches among themselves before taking on their parents in a feature game. Afterwards they were showered with trophies, calendars, medals and certificates of participation at the academy.
Originally published in the Trinidad and Tobago Guardian