Kuala Lumpur Youth Soccer Academy sets new standards for diversity on the football pitch
KLYS – a Multiethnic Football Team
KLYS from Malaysia is what one could call a rather variegated crowd. Due to special rules in the Malayan league, they have taken the initiative by establishing an academy for young, primarily foreign players.
'In Malaysia foreign players are not allowed to play in the league-system. In consequence, we established an academy in order to give the many foreigners in Malaysia the opportunity to play youth football and be together with the others. In our team we have players from 6-8 countries at the moment, for instance from Switzerland, Nigeria, Japan and China,' explains Aidil Sulaiman, who used to be a professional football player in Singapore.
'Football is very valuable as a tool for integration. Here, it is not important where people are from or how they look like. By teaching children the meaning of respect, we can live and work together in stead of looking at where people are from,' clarifies Aidil Sulaiman, before he talks about the goals of the team at this year's tournament.
'For such a small academy as ours, we are very content. By coming to Dana Cup, and by playing against all the best teams, and by learning about other cultures, we have already reached ours goals' he says.
You can watch the entire interview with KLYS on: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vfGrjlhR0EM
The jury at Dana Cup work hard to ensure that no teams use players, who are too old. Besides, the players in this picture are not suspected of being too old.
Jury in Control of the Players
Any complaints of the matches during Dana Cup will be passed on to the jury. Many complaints concern referees, who, according to the protests, have performed poorly and, thus, have had a negative effect on the outcome of the games. The rest of the complaints, more or less, involve opponents, who have used players that are too old to participate in a certain age group.
'In the tournament rules it is written that the jury at Dana Cup can take a random test in relation to the age of the players. Already last year we started to take more random tests and, this year, we have intensified the work. We turn up early at the football fields before the start of a match and then we ask the teams to hand over a list of the players, whom the coach plans on using. Then we control the age of the players. This kind of preventive work has resulted in fewer complaints that previous years,' explain Finn Larsen and Hans Jørn Christensen, who make up the jury together with Søren Bach.
Monday evening at midnight every club has to hand in a list of all the players they want to use at the tournament. Afterwards, no changes can be made to the list, not even if a team has several injured players.
'In a way, we prevent clubs from switching a player from one team to another, if they see an opportunity to improve their chances of winning,' stress the two experienced members of the jury, who have been stricter this year than previous years.
Anybody can file a protest. A complaint costs 500 Danish kroner, and if the complain is justified one will get one's money back.
Fair Play One of the Pillars of Dana Cup
Fair Play is regarded as one of the pillars of Dana Cup. In consequence, everybody expects that – players, coaches and managers – show fair play: during the matches but also in the spare time in the schools or in the Dana Cup area.
Each year referees and school guards pass on red and green forms to the jury telling about teams that have done something extraordinary by showing fair play.
At the finals at Hjørring stadium a team, which has showed fair play on the pitch or behaved exemplary in schools during this year's Dana Cup, will be appointed the winners of the Fair Play competition. The winners can be very proud of the price because it demonstrates that the team has come to Dana Cup with the correct attitude.
Byåsen is the biggest foreign club at Dana Cup 2013.
Placering af overskrift
Byåsen from Norway and Dana Cup are good friends. They are so good friends that Byåsen participates for the 30th time. Moreover, at this year's Dana Cup Byåsen is the biggest club with 16 teams.
'Traditionally, we do not participate in Norway Cup. On the other hand, each year, everybody in Byåsen looks forward to participating in Dana Cup,' explains Pål Arne Winsnes, who helps the club's B15 and is a member of the board.
Byåsen is Norway's biggest club with 3.000 members. At the same time, Byåsen is the name of the western part of Trondheim with 35.000 inhabitants – thus, almost 10% are members of the local sport club.
'We choose to participate in Dana Cup, because everybody considers the stay in Denmark a holiday. Lots of parents come along, and most of them stay in summer cottages in Lønstrup, where they enjoy themselves swimming or laying on the beach – that is, when they do not watch football at Dana Cup,' smiles Pål Arne wWinsnes, who updates Facebook on a regular basis and, accordingly, he is able to see that people back home are very interested in keeping up to date with how things are progressing at Dana Cup.
Byåsen has a proud tradition of football at Dana Cup. The club has won the A-finals three times. In 2010 the boys in B19 won silver and in 2012 the boys in B15 won bronze. At this year's Dana Cup, Byåsen has four teams in the A-playoffs, and Pål Arne Winsnes will not be surprised if one of the teams makes it to the finals.
From Mumbai to Dana Cup
Andheri Football Academy has travelled to Dana Cup together with India's national coach.
Andheri FA, which is considered one of the best football academies in Mumbai, has for the second time come to Dana Cup, and this time they have brought along a rather special trump card: India's national coach, Maloy Sengupta.
'There are about 100 players at the academy, and 14 of those are here at Dana Cup. It makes the academy a rather large academy, because football is not as popular as in other countries. However, we have a very fine cooperation with several schools and, at the academy, we practice 2 ½ hours a day,' explains Mr Sengupta, whose expectations are not too high.
'So far, we have been very satisfied with the tournament. We drew with a Swedish team, and we are happy with the result,' says Mr Sengupta, who also came along to Dana Cup in 2011 when they participated in the tournament for the first time
Seleccion de Honduras: 'Dana Cup is the best!'
Seleccion de Honduras thinks that the road to success at Dana Cup has been paved.
The team is made up of the best 15- and 16-year-old talents from all over Honduras and, even though, they are younger and smaller than their opponents, it looks as if the team is heading for success having already won the first three matches with an aggregate of 8 goals.
'Dana Cup is the best tournament. Better than Gothia Cup, Norway Cup and Barcelona Cup, and that is why we want to win: because it is a very prestigious tournament. Unfortunately, our best player injured his ankle in the previous game. However, he managed to score 6 goals in two matches, but he is unable to continue playing,' the leader, Dietar Quiroz, explains.
In the beginning of the week the team met the mayor of Hjørring and lit the Dana Cup flame, which made an everlasting impression on both players and coaches.
'We are very happy to be rewarded for our hard work getting to the tournament, since we got to lit the flame on Monday, and it was a great honour. Coming here was very expensive but with hard work and a lot of help from the parents I succeeded getting sponsors, discounts and money enough to make it happen,' Dieter says.
Deputy assistant commissioner Erik Kjærsgaard from the police in Hjørring underlines that we have unconditional right of way in Denmark – thus, you will need to stop for traffic in both directions and wait for a safe gap.
In Denmark Unconditional Right of Way
In Norway the drivers are used to giving way to approaching traffic from the right. It is called 'right of way'. In Denmark it is rarely encountered – not least in Hjørring. In consequence, the hair of Danish drivers and, not least, the police turn grey during Dana Cup as many Norwegians drive the roads in and around Hjørring.
'We have experienced many situation, which might have turned rather dangerous, and it is actually a kind of miracle that no serious accidents have happened on the roads,' says deputy assistant commissioner Erik Kjærsgaard from the police in Hjørring.
'You know, our Norwegian guests are good drivers, but in Denmark we have 'unconditional right of way' in most places, which means that you have to wait for the clear in all directions before driving ahead in the traffic. Normally, so-called 'shark teeth', which have been painted on the road, or a white warning triangle with a red edge indicate unconditional right of way. Here the driver will need to watch for traffic in both directions and wait for a safe gap,' stresses Erik Kjærsgaard, who is pleased to see that Dana Cup does not appear in the daily police activity report.
Kasper Poulsen (right) told about the unusual transport of injured players.
Dana Cup Driver on a Long Trip
When one of Dana Cup's friendly drivers last night had to pick up two injured players at Hospital Vendsyssel, he got an extra experience. At the hospital they had an additional three players, who had to be brought home so, of course, they asked if they could get a lift now that Dana Cup's driver happened to be at the hospital.
'Naturally, answered the polite driver. When the first two players had been dropped off, he asked the remaining three, who turned out to come from Brazil, where they wanted to go. Skagen, they answered in broken English. The driver found that answer a bit strange and, consequently, he asked several times if they meant the town of Skagen 50 km north of Hjørring or Skaga Hotel in the town of Hirtshals just north of Hjørring. Thus, they agreed that it was probably Skaga Hotel, but when they got there, the Brazilian players shook their heads.
'The players maintained that they had to go to Skagen and after the driver had phoned the Secretariat, they agreed that the driver better drive to Skagen – even though it did sound a bit strange that Brazilian players participating in Dana Cup had decided to stay far away in Skagen,' explained Kasper Poulsen, who is in charge of transport during Dana Cup, at today's meeting for school leaders.
When the car reached Skagen, one of the players, in more or less perfect English, burst out:
'It is such a positive experience to see that Skaw Cup and Dana Cup are able to collaborate in transporting injured players'.
The girls dressed in red from Honolulu Bulls have won the first three matches at Dana Cup.
The Bulls from Honolulu Charge Ahead
With three wins in the first three matches Honolulu Bulls Soccer Club charges ahead in G14. Strangely enough because football is still a rather minor sport on Hawaii, where the players rarely play foreign teams.
'Honolulu Bulls took part in Dana Cup back in 2007 for the first time, and since then we have been here several times with boys and girls,' explains head coach Miles Tsuruoka, who is himself at Dana Cup for the first time.
'My impression of Dana Cup is very positive. Everything is very European. There are many historical buildings, and the food is very different from American food,' smiles the American coach, who had already played three friendlies in Germany, before the bulls arrived in Hjørring.
On Tuesday Honolulu Bulls Soccer Club G14 beat Bærum 4-0 and Voss 5-0, and today the team beat Kvinesdal 4-0.
Football is a small but growing sport on Hawaii, where all the players know each other and where they rarely play foreign teams.
The M*A*S*H tent is open daily between 8.00 a.m. and 10 p.m.
More than 300 treated at the M*A*S*H tent
Heat and extremely dry and hard football pitches demand their victims. Already on the first day of play on Tuesday the doctors and nurses at the M*A*S*H and massage tents had to assist more than 300 players.
In the M*A*S*H tent 170 players turned up with injuries, while the helpers in the massage tent had to treat 160 players and referees.
The M*A*S*H tent is open daily between 8.00 a.m. and 10 p.m. Outside opening hours injured players must contact the doctor from the emergency service. The tents are situated next to the pitch at Fortuna's clubhouse.
Jacob Olsen helps Polish players with their bracelets.
24-hours-a-day Dana Cup answers. Thus, the Secretariat at Dana Cup in Vendia Hallen is always reachable. The office and the phones are open 24-hours-a-day, so everybody can be sure of getting friendly and efficient help.
'We transfer all calls immediately made to Dana Cup's main phone number. Repeatedly, it is people from outside, who are trying to get in contact with key persons in Dana Cup's organisation. But quite often it is also parents or relatives, who need to find a player or a coach at Dana Cup,' explains Jacob Olsen, who is one of the volunteers working at the Secretariat.
The Secretariat is also responsible for the transportation of, for instance, injured players to and from the hospital and guests at Dana Cup.