Five boys teams and four girls sides represented Auckland Football at the annual event which has brought together the most talented footballers from Northland to Taupo since the first boys tournament in 1954.
AFF Football Development Manager Stevie Baxter says the tournament was a tremendous success in a number of ways for Auckland Football.
“From a playing perspective it was great to put our training into practice in games and to allow all the players to get federation game time was excellent,” Baxter said.
“It was great to see the guiding principles of our philosophy coming out in the performances of our players and teams on the park and they can now take those experiences back to their club environments to continue their development.”
Under the refreshed Talent Development Framework of New Zealand Football - which aims to widen the base of talent at U-12 level - the Auckland Football sides were not streamed as they have been in previous years.
“Under the new framework our role is to make the base of our talent pyramid at this age group as big as we can to feed a greater number of quality players into the older age bands further up the chain at FTC level,” Baxter said.
“It was great to be able to begin that process with our Weir Rose Bowl preparation and everyone involved in the event from Auckland Football can be proud of their effort.”
The AFF Firebirds team, coached by Andrew Campbell and Ian Davidson, were winners of the boys event after taking a 1-0 win over Waikato Bay of Plenty Football’s Federation side in the final.
AFF Firebirds player Justin Bailey (Onehunga Sports) took out the Golden Boot award as the tournament top scorer with eight goals.
Three of the four boys semi-finalists were Auckland Football teams as the AFF Chargers, coached by Ryan Shiffman, and the AFF Sharks, coached by Paul Marshall and Grant Bracey were also among the top four sides at the event.
Meanwhile, the AFF Crystals team, coached by Brenda Kerr, reached the girls final where they were beaten 1-0 by Waikato Bay of Plenty Football’s Federation team.
AFF Emeralds player Annabelle Pakieto (Ellerslie AFC) finished as the top scorer in the girls event with seven goals.
Click the related article link below for a full list of the Auckland Football team results over the three-day tournament. Click here for a look at the full tournament results/standings (NFF website).
Visit our Facebook page for a selection of photos from the tournament.
Photos by Shane Wenzlick