Grassroots Youth Football

in Sport Insight

Today we catch up with Tracey Baglietto, Lynx U6 Coach.  Tracey has always possessed a passion for sports generally and has always been involved in most sports activities; her main true passion, however, has always been Football.

She played for a very successful Victoria Stars ladies team for 5 years, winning five consecutive league titles amongst many other trophies and also played for the Gibraltar National Side.

In November 2012, she was appointed to the Gibraltar Football Association Executive Board and was a member of the GFA delegation, which was ultimately triumphant in securing Gibraltar’s UEFA Membership, becoming the 54th Football Nation to join the UEFA Family. During this time she also undertook the role of Head of Women’s Football, she went on to pass UEFA’s Women in Football Leadership Programme and travelled abroad representing Gibraltar at all UEFA Women’s Conferences.

After her departure from the Gibraltar FA in August 2015, she decided to have a break from football.  During the summer of 2016 she was offered the role of becoming the Lynx FC Youth Development Officer and Lynx U13 coach for the club for one season, which she took on board with great enthusiasm.  

At present, Tracey is now coaching the Under 6 Lynx FC team. As she has noted this is indeed quite a big challenge as she believes that in order for a child to become a successful football player or be part of the football world, players do not only need to have the skills but the discipline to flourish within this challenging sport.

She has discovered that being a coach for a youth team does take quite a vast time of your personal life as a lot of pre-planning and effort in organising that all does run smoothly within the team is imperative.  She does think that anyone taking up this role must have a vocation and a passion for this sport.  As with all other sports coaches need to be at all times up to date with all the new rules which are implemented and this in itself at times is time consuming when trying to pass on to players as old habits are tough to shy away from.  She does believe that team bounding has to be a main factor within the team and she does try her best for all players to get on which each other and at times organises a get together outside the sports facilities perimeters.

She states, that within Lynx FC Grassroots Football is taken on board very seriously, thank you mainly to Mr Albert Parody who is the club owner and who he himself is a strong believer and is a top football lover himself.  Lynx FC do currently have  teams within all age groups and this in itself does involve a lot of hard and dedication from our now Youth Development Officer Mr Joaquin Buhagiar, who spends most of his free time at the club, organising and ensuring that all teams are adequately equipped with all football equipment, kits and above all that all age groups do comply with all the rules & regulations set upon by the Gibraltar Football Association. Tracey is both grateful to Mr Parody and Mr Buhagiar.

Grassroots Football in Gibraltar is one of the most popular sports, that’s why she feels that all clubs and indeed the Gibraltar Football Association do have a day to day challenge in trying to work together as one in promoting and placing all the mechanisms so that this sport does progress to the high standards which is expected.  

She senses and appreciates the great work carried out behind the scenes by all i.e. GFA, clubs, coaches and most importantly the players & supporters. However, during these current difficult times which has hit all aspects of our lifes, football has also been hit badly and it has only been because of the great effort from the GFA Youth Committee and all clubs in working together and  trying tirelessly to bring back grassroots football these past few months that this has now been achieved. 

The kick-start of the youth season she says has been a great triumph; friendly matches have now started to be played albeit behind closed doors as for now this she says will no doubt become the “New Normal” for the time being.  She has expressed that the look on all the children, coaches and all those involved is just priceless so that in itself is the greatest reward this sport can take back.

However, she is a firm believer that there are enough quality and scope with the youth sections for Gibraltar football to not now but in the near future give the opportunity to our now youngsters to progress professionally abroad within the Elite teams.

For further information, please contact the club on lynxfc@mail.com or 200 69695.

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