In the first week of half term, fourteen Year 8 boys arrived in Barcelona for our first football tour on Catalan soil. Our trip started with a visit to Barcelona’s historic sites such as Olympic Park, La Sagrada Familia and the many Gaudi buildings.
On Monday the Ekkono training began, where boys experimented with this innovative approach to training, which is all about interpreting and looking at perceptions around you in critical decision making. It was a very inspiring day both for the players and the teachers.
In the afternoon, we visited Camp Nou, its museum, stadium and the pitch itself. Many boys (and staff) lost their minds imagining what it must be like to play there in front of 100 000 people. For their first fixture, the boys professionally entered the pitch waving at the crowd complete with background music and floodlights. This impressive entrance was followed by an equally impressive Prep goal within the first few minutes of action. This first game saw us developing great possession skills, ending with a fantastic 4-1 victory.
The second day started again with more top quality training focused on how to support the ball carrier efficiently. The second and last fixture of the tour was against La Salle Bonanova. Again, the match was played under floodlights with a sizeable crowd in support. Once again the boys gave it their all, demonstrating great organisation and attacking skills. The game was very tight and the Spanish team made the difference on set pieces, with two goals scored from corner kicks.
The final day of the tour was particularly special, beginning with two training sessions on defensive skills and different types of passes. The day ended with the spectacular FC Barcelona vs Manchester City game at the Camp Nou. No doubt the biggest game of the year, the boys watched their eyes shining, as Messi scored his hat-trick under the Barcelona sky.
Without a doubt an action packed 4 days igniting our passion for football.