|Manchester United coaches address DC SCORES alumni.|
The summer has practically flown by.
Tomorrow is the last day of DC SCORES summer camp, and my internship is also approaching its end. My summer with SCORES has been filled with experiences, but one of the most memorable took place on Tuesday.
With two well-respected soccer teams in town for a friendly at FedEx Field, who knew that I would get the opportunity for encounters with both in one day!
At Bruce Monroe, I shared the same excitement as campers when I got the chance to meet professional soccer player Javier Zanetti from Inter Milan. Zanetti was great with the kids, guiding them through a series of fun drills and then answering questions about being a pro.
“I would ask him how long he would practice, because if I wanted to be a soccer player I need to know how I need to train,” camper Eryck E. said.
The students were thrilled about being up close and personal with a professional soccer player and getting to ask him any question. Each camper also got their own autograph, and some were lucky enough to get him to sign their cleats, soccer balls, and even cellphones.
|Inter Milan's Javier Zanetti with Bruce Monroe campers.|
After a short commute to Tubman Elementary School, I had the opportunity to join SCORES alumni in a clinic led by coaches from Manchester United -- yes, that team! Needless to say, being instructed by professional coaches is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
“They had a lot of energy which rubbed off on us and it was really fun,” Jennifer P. said.
The positive attitudes from the visiting coaches made the clinic a unique experience for both them and the alumni. And I was lucky enough to join them and participate in drills that professional players go through on a regular bases.
“It was exciting because they were teaching us stuff that they also teach professional players,” Jose Q said. "It almost felt like we were able to step inside the shoes of a professional soccer player."
These types of opportunities do not knock twice. I definitely had to use the clinic to not just enjoy my time playing on the field but to also embrace the chance to learn from the coaches.
“I felt like this is like a one-time thing and you have to put everything out on the field,” Ariana R. said.
The coaches didn’t only give us soccer knowledge; they also dished us advice that we can use in our everyday lives. They encouraged everyone to stay focused, driven, and to not be lured by temptation. The advice from established professionals was greatly appreciated and made the experience even more worthwhile.
SCORES summer is just about over, but you can relive all the excitement. View photos on Instagram at @dc_scores, and check out our large summer camp album on Flickr HERE.
Summer camp profiles: Skill-building on the soccer field replaces inactivity
First week of DC SCORES summer camp brings youth from across the city together