Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Academy step up
Phnom Penh Crown Academy youngsters at the moment. Hot on the heels of last weekend's First State Gold Investment Cup triumph, where the two Academy teams picked up the winners and runners-up trophies, the U-13 squad will now step up a couple of levels and into the U-15 age bracket for the forthcoming National U-15 Youth Championships that begin this weekend. With Academy head coach Bouy Dary off to Taiwan with the Crown first team for the AFC President's Cup final round, the Academy team will be overseen by Kao Kiry and in the first round of group matches, the Academy will meet the U-15 teams from Svay Rieng's Chhma Khmao (17 Sept), Kandal (19 Sept) and Koh Kong (20 Sept). That will determine who goes through to the quarter-finals and beyond. All the matches will take place at the National Football Center at Cheng Meng, 32 teams are competing in eight groups of four teams apiece, with the final taking place on 23 September. This will be a stern test for the Academy boys, playing against older and bigger teenagers, after having things pretty much their own way at the U-13 and U-14 levels already this season. Crown have already won the Barclays Capital Indochina Starfish U-14 championship, given the Festival U-13 champions a good thrashing and won the First State Gold cup to boot. The U-15 championships will be an altogether tougher proposition to do well in against the teams they have been earmarked to face in the group stages, and if they manage to progress further.