BELIZE CITY, Mon. Jan. 22, 2018– Some ten (10) teams are reportedly registered, though only five (5) showed up yesterday at the Yabra Field to participate in the season-opening Marathon to kick off the 2nd Annual City Boys 10 & Under Grassroots Football Tournament being hosted by the City Boys Football Club and coordinated by Yabra icon, Jerome “Pealoff” Mejia and City Boys manager, Leaton St. Clair. The tournament caters to children who are from 8 to 10 years old at the start of the competition, and includes a few female players on some teams.
According to St. Clair, they are implementing the true “grassroots” philosophy in this tournament, with fifteen (15) players registered on each team, and all players have an equal amount of playing time in each game. The real “grassroots” philosophy emphasizes participation more than competition; but competition is nonetheless intense, as the youths go at it with vim and vigor in the games “from whistle to whistle.”
“We separate each team into two groups of six players each, and the game is played in four quarters of ten minutes each,” explained St. Clair. The small-sided games feature one player in goal and five others playing out. Group one for each team plays in the first and third quarters; and group two play in the second and fourth quarters. The extra player is used as a substitute during the game, or in cases of injury. The goals are six feet high and ten feet wide.
Yesterday’s Marathon final featured the same two teams as in last year’s championship, which was played at the MCC Grounds; but the outcome this time was different, with City Boys, Jr. emerging as 3-0 winners yesterday.
The regular season of the City Boys 10 & Under Grassroots Tournament gets under way this Saturday.