One hundred lucky aspiring footballers between the ages of seven and 14 from across the Turks and Caicos Islands will get the opportunity to acquire world class rudimentary skills, thanks to the Real Madrid Foundation, which has selected the TCI to carry out this developmental clinic.
The three-day camp has been infused with star power, with injection of Real Madrid legendary attacking midfielder José María Gutiérrez Hernández or ‘Guti’ for short, who will accompany two of the Club’s professional coaches to the clinic.
The camp is being held in conjunction with the Turks and Caicos Islands Football Association (TCIFA) and is scheduled to run from Friday (July 7) to Sunday (July 9), at the TCIFA Field, located at Venetian Road, Providenciales.
The Real Madrid Foundation and the TCIFA staged a joint news conference on Thursday morning at the Ritz Carlton Hotel, to launch the clinic, with Guti being part of the panel, and who also fielded questions from the local media.
The former Spanish national player, who helped Real Madrid to win 15 trophies, including three Champions League titles and five La Liga championships, noted that the camp was just the beginning of a hopefully lasting relationship between the Real Madrid Foundation and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
“It is a big initiative that we are bringing the Real Madrid Foundation here in the island (Providenciales), and thanks for the support, and it a pleasure to be here with my family in Turks and Caicos,” Guti told the gathering.
Roberto Stipa of the Desarrollos Hotelco group, the developers for the Ritz Carlton TCI, and who played a pivotal role in making the camp a reality, told the news conference that Real Madrid is known for youth development and outreach creation.
“This initiative could not be possible without the support of the TCI Football Federation (Association). Thank you for everything you have done for football on the island,” Stipa said, pointing out that Guti has deep passion not only for the game but also to giving back to the community.
“We are honored to have him and his family as part of this initiative,” Stipa said.
“While this event is centred around football, it is so much more than just the sport. It is about our community coming together to support the evolution of football in our young athletes. We hope that this initiative will inspire young kids to dream big and pursue their passion of football. It is our belief that it is through events like this we can nurture and cultivate talent, providing a steppingstone for young athletes to reach their full potential,” Stipa added.
In the meantime, Dane Ritchie, Technical Director for the TCIFA was elated that the legendary European club chose to stage such a camp in the Turks and Caicos Islands.
“It is a really huge occasion for the kids. They are looking forward to it. They will enjoy it, I am sure,” Ritchie said, while thanking all who worked behind the scene to make the camp a reality.