Young Addicks impress in Madrid Cup


Head of Academy Coaching Rhys Williams reflected on a successful tour for Charlton's U13s and U14s, who competed against the likes of Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain in the Madrid Cup.

The Charlton side, led by Lead Youth Development Phase Coach Dave Chatwin, earned a fifth-place finish over the weekend, finishing ahead of the likes of Arsenal, Paris Saint-Germain and Porto. 

“We had an unbelievable experience going to the Madrid Cup with a mixture of our U13s and U14s," explained Williams. "We were in a group of six with the top two from each going through to the quarter-finals. We had three games on the Friday, two group games on the Saturday and were successful in getting through to the quarter-finals.

“We finished second in our group behind Real Madrid, who we lost to rather nervously in the first game. The boys did incredibly well; we finished up by winning against Spanish team Rayo Vallecano in the semi-finals and then beat Antalyaspor to finish fifth in the competition of 24 teams, behind Barcelona, Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and CD Leganes.

"It's an unbelievable achievement," he beamed. "Some of the bigger clubs behind us included Arsenal, PSG and Porto. We were in and amongst the European giants and from a footballing perspective it was an incredible experience for our players."

Williams was ever thankful for the work and support of Valley Gold, who funded the trip to Spain.

“Without Valley Gold this trip wouldn't have happened," he said. "We are very fortunate that Valley Gold are supporting the academy in a number of ways, probably the biggest part of that being the transport that took us down to the airport and collected us with Bob and the team.

"They funded a very expensive competition that was between £10,000 to £20,000 from my understanding. It's an incredible commitment financially to enable our boys to have this brilliant experience.

"Without it we couldn't possibly do these things and we are incredibly grateful for the support of the supporters that back the fund and for the staff, Sharron and Matt, at Valley Gold who are working very closely with Steve [Avory, Academy Director] all the time. We are eternally grateful that we can have these life-changing opportunities for the players and staff."

Charlton fans can support the academy by signing up to the Valley Gold scheme. Valley Gold enables fans to support the club’s academy in unearthing the talents of tomorrow, as well as giving them the chance to win cash prizes.

For more information on how you can become a Valley Gold member, please click here


(Article by Alex Forrest)

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