Three Flamborough Soccer teams who barely won a game, came together to score a common goal at Joe Sam’s Leisure Park on Saturday – to raise the spirits of their players and to have them register for the league again the next year.
“It’s the first season where the kids have been in a dual age group,” said Michael Seaman, the coach of Merit Insurance. “There were some pretty strong results in the season and a lot of long faces and we wanted to keep the kids happy and love the game of soccer.”
The kids, ranging from 8 to 9 years of age, had been defeated by scores of 13-0 and 9-0 by the top teams in the league.
Seaman, whose team won the tournament, first came up with the idea that started the tournament. They wanted to give a chance to the players to play in a tournament where every team had a chance to win.
“Having lost every game but one up until we founded the tournament, it’s not a memory that they were really too pleased with,” said Seaman.
Peter Gray, the coach of Green Acres Landscape and whose company, Filter Factory, sponsored the cup and trophies, concurred.
“Some games, my players would hardly even touch the ball. It was a complete mismatch,” said Gray. Even though his team had only won once in the season, he mentioned that the top teams in the league had not lost a game all season. He did not feel it was fair in a house league.
Seaman hoped that the tournament would allow the players to “finish the season having fun with a smile on their face and maybe they can come back next year.”
The chance to play against equality skilled opponents did help to promote positivity in the players.
“We just kept on trying through the season and end in the end, we never gave up and we won,” said Jack Melia, a co-captain of Merit Insurance, proud that his team had won the tournament.
Their goaltender, Andy van Es, also felt inspired by the tournament.
“I learned that the last team in the league can be really good,” said van Es. “I’m looking forward to next season.”
Gray and Seaman hoped that the league would continue to grow and that the players would not abandon soccer and sign up next year.
“If you can encourage your kids to come back next year, it is important to keep the club growing,” said Gray in his speech at the end of the tournament.