SBSC U12 White travels to tackle EPL

SBSC U12 White

Santa Barbara Soccer Club's U12 White team is headed to England together, where they will train with English Premier League (EPL) coaches and compete against youth teams connected to the professional clubs.

A year and a half of preparation is nearly complete for Santa Barbara Soccer Club’s Boys U12 White team, which leaves for England on Friday to train and compete with some of the world’s largest professional soccer clubs.

A highlight will come on March 28th when the U12 Whites play against Manchester United’s development team at the club’s world-famous training facility following a tour of the Old Trafford Stadium. The Santa Barbara team will also compete against youth teams from Tottenham Hotspurs, Charlton and Sheffield United.

During the trip, SBSC U12 White will participate in several training sessions run by EPL coaches broken up by sight-seeing tours of London, Manchester and Liverpool.

It’s an important step for these high-level youth athletes, who are among the top players in the state of California for their age group. The U12 White team, made up of 11 and 12 year olds, competes in the elite CSL Gold Division here in California and made the final 16 of the recent National Cup.

“They watch the EPL games on Fox Soccer Channel and they dream of playing for Man United, Chelsea, Spurs or whatever team they support,” said Santa Barbara Soccer Club coach Billy Gallagher. “On this trip they will get to compete against EPL Youth teams that will help them gauge what the highest level looks like and what they have to strive for.”

The team has gone through a number of fundraisers to find the means needed to support the once-in-a-lifetime type trip.

“Making a trip of this magnitude a reality takes a lot of work organizing and fundraising and this group of parents were fantastic in this department,” Gallagher said. “Everyone played their part and their sons should feel very proud and fortunate not only to have such great parents but to have them present an opportunity like this one.”

The U12 White roster includes Adam Hogue, Adam Chenoweth, Avi Ghitterman, Sloan Hanson, John Henry Kronen, Daniel Arzate, Juanito Zarate, Luis Garcia, Max Levy, Owen Bates, Kevin Ulloa, Matthew Carlson & Ben Roach. Guest players that are coming for our UK roster are, Jake Yonally, Owen Lambe, Ryan Flood and Jack Luckhurst.

“It will be a trip of a lifetime with numerous big time experiences and I just hope that one of these experiences ignites something in one or all of them to go on a chase their dreams, whatever they may be,” Gallagher said.