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Chelsea Hosting World U-16 Tournament


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Celebration of Academy & Community Pavillion

13/08/2008 11:49

Chelsea are hosting a tournament for some of the world’s top Under-16 teams to celebrate the opening of their new Academy and Community Pavilion at Cobham later this month.

A three-day international under-16 tournament will be held from August 23rd-25th to celebrate the opening of Chelsea‘s new Academy and Community Pavilion, featuring young talent from four continents.

Ajax, River Plate, Bayern Munich, the Suwon Samsung Bluewings, Russian team Tolyatti FC, the Disney Soccer “All-Stars†from the US and Lebanon’s Al-Nejmeh FC from Beirut - who are representing Chelsea’s Global Charity Partner Right To Play - will participate in the tournament, along with Chelsea themselves.

FA Director of Football Development, Sir Trevor Brooking, will join dignitaries on 23rd August at 10am to unveil a plaque to kick off the tournament and formally open the new building and associated facilities.

The tournament proper will kick off at 11am as Chelsea take on River Plate (see full fixture list below).

Sir Trevor said: “The facilities at Cobham are a tribute to how much stock the club places in developing young talent. The FA will be imminently rolling out a new coaching strategy with a range of age-appropriate courses, and hopefully a new generation of young English talent will get to enjoy the fantastic facilities here.

“The fact that the new pavilion is also a base for Chelsea’s community scheme shows how much importance this work has within the structure of the club. I have always believed in the power of the game to reach out to communities and it’s fantastic that the training ground will become a base to develop this vital work.â€

Chelsea said in a statement that their Academy “is a vital part of the club developing young English talent as well as the best young players from abroad. Over 70 per cent of Chelsea’s Academy are English and it boasts 18 current English internationals between the ages of 16 and 21 years old. Last season the Chelsea Youth team also reached the FA Youth Cup Final for the first time in 47 years and Jack Cork was also named captain of the England U19 team in the European Championships.â€

The Blues’ Academy manager, Neil Bath, said: “These facilities are amongst the best in the world and will play an important role as we develop more and more young players through our Academy system. Being in close proximity to the first team ground gives younger players something to aim for and helps develop closer bonds between all the Chelsea teams.

“The first team are an inspiration to the younger lads and the new collegiate type facilities means more interaction between the players.

“The fact that so many teams are here from around the world shows the global reach of Chelsea and the international nature of the modern game. The tournament is going to be a fantastic experience not just for our lads but for everyone playing in such a high level and prestigious event.â€

Chelsea said their new facilities would also become an integral part of the club’s community work, offering sporting and educational opportunities to young people throughout London and South-East England. The club added that last season, more than 350,000 young people benefited from Chelsea’s Football in the Community scheme.


1. Chelsea

2 River Plate

3 Suwon Samsung Bluewings

4 Al-Nejmeh FC


1. Ajax

2. Bayern Munich

3. Tolyatti FC

4. Disney Soccer Show-Case “All-Starsâ€


Saturday 23 August


Chelsea v River Plate


Ajax v Bayern Munich

Suwon Bluewings v Al Nejmeh

Tolyatti FC v Disney All Stars

Sunday 24 August


Chelsea v Suwon Bluewing

Ajax v Tolyatti

River Plate v Al Nejmeh

Bayern Munich v Disney All Stars


Chelsea v Al Nejmeh

Ajax v Disney All Stars

Monday 25 August

11am 2 x Semi-Finals

1pm 4th v 4th and 3rd v 3rd play-off games

3pm 3rd v 4th place Play Off


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