Our Academy squad has flown out to Switzerland for the prestigious ‘Torneo Internazionale’ in Bellinzona.
The tournament kicks-off tomorrow (Thursday, April 21) and has once again attracted some of the biggest teams in world football.
Indeed, we will take on FC Basel of Switzerland before facing Dutch outfit Feyenoord and Argentinian giants Boca Juniors.
Portuguese side Benfica and Italians Sampdoria are in the other group alongside Team Ticino of Switzerland and Velez of Argentina.
Our Academy won the tournament in 2009 but, as coach Alex Inglethorpe explained, this year’s event will be very much about a younger squad gaining experience.
“It’s an Under-19 tournament and we’re taking a young squad out there,” said Alex. “There are no expectations on this squad to go out and win the tournament or even finish in the top two of the group. This is all about gaining experience."
The team kick-off against FC Basel tomorrow before facing Feyenoord on Friday and a final group match against Boca Juniors on Saturday.
The top two teams from each group progress to Sunday’s semi-finals while teams will also face play-offs for 7th/8th place, 5th/6th place and 3rd/4th place.