Future generation of football stars learn the 'Italian way' in Dundee

Italian Serie A side Juventus bring Turin to Tayside with training academy camp in the City of Discovery.

Italian Series A giants Juventus have brought Turin to Tayside by hosting a football training academy camp in Dundee.

Around 100 youngsters – including a record number of young girls – took part in the practice sessions, which aimed to teach future Scottish talent how to play the Italian way.

Ten-year-old Willow McLardy was among those in attendance. She said: “I want to be a professional footballer one day and I think that this will really help me to improve.”

And she’ll be pleased to know the head coach of the Juventus Academy was impressed by the level of skill on show.

“This is our first time here in Dundee and we are having a good time, we have enjoyed it,” said Giuseppe Donato. “It’s the third day now. We started with the sun but I now notice that the level of the child here is good and we hope to continue that in a good way.

“Our methodology in particular is totally different to the Scottish methodology. But the guys are good and they are trying to follow our methodology and I notice that they have the spirit to improve.”

Focusing on being a team player and having a good attitude – on and off the pitch – has been a priority throughout the camp.

Archie Clelland, 13, said: “Today we have been working on zone two, so that’s looking after the ball, it’s possession. Its been really good and I have really enjoyed it, making loads of new friends and it’s good to play football.”

The city of Dundee’s partnership with the Italian club began when Paul Clelland was on holiday in Cyprus and he saw the academy training there.

Mr Clelland said: “We’re working with universities across the country. Juventus have put great play in football being a tool for helping educate young children through football and universities were our natural partners.

“We’ve worked with Stirling, Edinburgh, Glasgow and now Dundee, which has fantastic facilities for sport.

“Our Italian friends can’t believe how many football pitches there are dotted around the country.

“Sometimes we’re quite critical of our facilities but they think they’re fantastic.”

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