European Qualifications Kicks off....
THE Opening Ceremony & Draw of the Premier Cup European Qualification Tournament, hosted by AGF, Aarhus, took place last night bringing together twenty of the best under-15 football teams in Europe - all fighting for one of two places in this summer’s 2010 World Finals of the Manchester United Premier Cup (MUPC).
Local band “Aarhus Garden” kicked off the celebrations, playing for the twenty teams before leading them through the streets of Aarhus to the Cinemaxx in Bruuns Galleri, Aarhus where NIKE’s Regional Sports Marketing Director Tina Salminen and AGF Chairman Steffen Olesen welcomed assembled teams and supporters.
Special guests officiating at the Draw were AGF stars Mark Howard and Benny Feilhaber, who also plays for the US national team. Both greeted the team captains as they came forward and wished the young stars of the future a good tournament: “Good luck, have fun, enjoy your football and the whole experience, and play your matches in the spirit of “fair play”.
THE DRAW - twenty finalists were split into four groups of five teams and will face each other in the group stages.
First team on the board in Group A was host team AGF, who were joined by Bucaspor, AF Konoplev YP, BNZ Tirol and PSV Eindhoven.
Group B was headed up by Danish Premier Cup Champions Brondby IF, then Beitar NT Netanya, Rommen SK, Red Star Belgrade and STVV (Sint-Truiden).
NK Dinamo were first drawn for Group C and will be joined by 2005 European Premier Cup Champions Brommapojkarna, FC Nitra, FC Zurich and FC Bravo.
2004 European Premier Cup Champions SK Slavia Prague take the first spot in Group D and will be facing Vasas Academy, Football Clube do Porto, Legia Warsaw and HJK Helsinki in their group matches.
The group and placement matches,are played this Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning (30 april & 1st/2nd May) at the Fredensvang, while the bronze and final matches will be played on Sunday afternoon at the NRGi Park stadium.
Both finalists will progress to the Manchester United Premier Cup World Finals in August.