“It was an excellent opportunity for them to experience a very different style of play that focuses on ball retention and patience with the ball.”
October Half-Term also saw the return of the Football trip to Porto from Saturday 22nd to Wednesday 26th October. The students had a wonderful five days, developing their football skills, and experiencing a new culture. Mr Jones shared with us the events of the week:
Early in the morning, we flew over to Porto to start our football experience. After landing we were straight over to a shopping centre to explore, before taking a coach over to a Liga Portugal game: Famalicao vs Pacos Ferreira. All the students enjoyed an excellent game of high-quality football, which was eventually won by the home team, 2-1, much to the enjoyment of all the students.
The day started early, with a coach to our first training session to be delivered by the Porto coaches. The students enjoyed a mixture of activities and a high standard of coaching, with a specific focus on possession and positional play.
During the afternoon, our students played three very competitive fixtures against local Porto teams, which resulted in one victory, one draw and one defeat. It was an excellent opportunity for them to experience a very different style of play that focuses on ball retention and patience with the ball.
We headed to Dragon Force HQ, to participate in two sessions of coaching, developing on what the coaches had observed the previous day in the fixture. Then in the evening, we headed back to our hotel for an early dinner, before playing some pool and bowling.
The day began with our final training session, which gave the students an opportunity to play a game against the coaches, which was very much enjoyed. Then during the evening, we had our final fixture, against another local Porto team, under the floodlights. These were again very competitive fixtures, which resulted in one victory and two defeats, against much stronger opposition.
The highlight of the trip came the final day, where the students had a full stadium tour of Porto’s ground, Estadio do Dragao. We experienced the presidential box, the changing room, the touchline and even the pitch itself. We then explored the club museum, and saw numerous trophies won by Porto, including the Champions League trophy won by Jose Mourinho in 2004. To top the day off we then had a three-course meal in one of the club boxes, overlooking the stadium.