Virgili and Regan farewell NNSW under 12's

Taylor Regan and James Virgili wished the NNSW under 12’s squad luck before they left on a trip to Japan this week.

Hunter Ports Newcastle Jets players Taylor Regan and James Virgili took time out from their busy pre-season training schedule to see off the Northern NSW under 12-s squad before they left on a trip to Japan this week.

The NNSW squad are taking part in the Saitama International Tournament where 16 Japanese and eight international teams will take part.

Like the NNSW under 12-s, Regan and Virgili both grew up playing their junior football in Newcastle.

“In my Northern team we had myself, Jacob Pepper, Ben Kantarovski and Sam Gallaway who are all playing for the Jets now,” Virgili said.

“This is a great opportunity for them now to see where they are at on the international scale and maybe in a few years we might see some of them playing for the Jets.”

Regan said the experience of having the chance to play overseas at such a young age would be one the players would cherish for a long time.

“There wasn-t really anything like this for me when I was growing up so I-m sure they-ll make the most of it and have a great time in Japan,” he said.

“You don-t necessarily have to be the best player at 11 or 12 years of age, if you keep working hard and are committed you-ll be rewarded for that down the track.”

The Tournament will commence on Thursday, July 26 with the official welcome prior to matches kicking off on Friday, July 27 and continuing until Sunday July 29.

Northern NSW will face Japanese sides Koshigaya City and Chiba on their first day of the Tournament. All fixtures will occur at the home of J-League team Urawa Reds in Saitama, Tokyo.