Academy: Junior Jets perform well at National Youth Championships

The Newcastle Jets competed in the National Youth Championships for Boys over the October long weekend, with an U-13s and U-14s side heading north to Coffs Harbour for the tournament.

It’s a positive trend for the young Newcastle Jets following the success in July Westfield National Youth Championship for Girls, where the U-14s and U-15s both won their respective tournaments.

The U-13s boys side enjoyed a successful tournament and topped their group with four wins and two losses against state and federation sides. Against other Hyundai A-League clubs’ academies, they won one and lost one.

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Their biggest victory was a 7-1 demolition job of Tasmania, with the side keeping three clean sheets and putting 11 goals in on the second day of the tournament.

Perhaps the highlight of the U-13s campaign was Blair Fitzpatrick, who was awarded the Goalkeeper of the Tournament gong for his efforts between the sticks.

Blair Fitzpatrick
Blair Fitzpatrick was the U-13 Goalkeeper of the Tournament.

The U-14s boys side were up against some tough opposition, and left with their heads held high after three wins, a draw, and four losses from their eight matches.

Results in the U-14s were tighter than their U-13s counterparts, but the Jets did manage to grab back-to-back 3-1 wins over Football NSW Country and Queensland Country.

New Academy Technical Director and current Westfield W-League Head Coach, Craig Deans said that both teams performed well.

“The under 13s and 14s played to a good level, they represented the club and themselves with pride,” Deans said.

U-14 team
The U-14s team after a tough match.

“There were a number of players that were identified for future international squads which is massive for both them and the club.”

Academy Coach, Dean Mayer said it was an important step in the development of the young Jets players.

“It’s a good experience for the boys, especially the under 13s who will come back next year and be better for having played this time around,” Meyer said.

“Looking further ahead, it’s really good for the future. It’s a good crop of young players and this weekend showed they’re only going to get better.”