Representatives of the New England Revolution professional soccer club will be on-Island March 17 and 18 for a series of free clinics for Island youth soccer players.
The clinics are part of Revolution Academy, an outreach program of the Revolution, who play in the nationwide Major League Soccer (MLS) league, and will come to the Island with the help of Alex Poole, a soccer star at Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School (MVRHS) and at Elmira College. Poole (MVRHS 2009) is a coach for the Revolution Academy program.
The skills sessions for MV United youth soccer players grades 4 through 12 will be held at the high school gym. Deven Apajee, the Revolution Academy director, and Dean Brookes, Revolution regional manager, will run the skills training on Saturday, March 17, between 1 pm and 6 pm, and on Sunday between 9 am and 5 pm.
Sessions are open to the public, and will last 75 minutes with a 15-minute break between sessions.
The move by MV United is part of its ongoing efforts to bring skills and knowledge to young Island soccer players. MV United earlier this month sponsored coaches’ clinics and licensing training on-Island, courtesy of the the Massachusetts Youth Soccer Association.
MV United vice president David Wallis credited Poole with facilitating the players’ clinics: “We can’t thank Alex enough for his help. He is giving back to the Island, and sharing the experiences he has had in his soccer life off-Island. Alex is a graduate of the Island youth soccer program who went on to captain both his MVRHS and Elmira College (2013) soccer teams,” Wallis said, adding, “We are an Island, and that can be an obstacle in being selected for these kinds of learning experiences for our kids. We see this as an opportunity for Revolution Academy to learn about us and for us to know them better.
“Hopefully [the clinics] will lead to an ongoing relationship between us and Revolution Academy, and become an important part of our development work. And it will be fun for our MV United coaches to observe how the academy coaches work with their teams,” he said this week.
Apajee began the academy’s work 13 years ago, and now oversees more than 100 coaches who offer clinics around the New England region.
Brookes, a former high school, college and U.S. Development Academy coach, joined the Revolution program in 2005, and oversees Revolution partner relationships and manages the coaches and programs that are delivered.