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Nike’s Academy Most Wanted

Nike’s Academy Most Wanted

Article by: Paul McMaster

Mon, Nov 07.16

Nike’s Academy Most Wanted

Nike’s premium football retail partner, Ultra Football were on hand at the Nike Most Wanted Finals in Sydney.

The journey to professional football has just begun for Sydney’s Jacob Sullivan and Auckland’s Jake Mechell, who outplayed more than 700 football hopefuls in the Nike Academy Most Wanted trials to secure a place at the Global Showcase.

Nineteen-year-old Sullivan who hails from Ramsgate Beach in Sydney, and Mechell, a 17 year-old from Cambridge, NZ, will travel to the UK next month to compete in the Nike Academy Most Wanted Global Showcase alongside talented young footballers from all over the world.

The talented duo were standouts at the weekend’s finals, held at Pirtek Stadium, the culmination of six weeks of trials, spanning eight different cities around Australia and New Zealand. The trials put players through their paces in sessions testing their physical, mental, tactical and technical skills.

Speaking about his selection, Sullivan said: “I was really impressed with myself and the way I was feeling, touching the ball and my movement over the weekend.”

“This opportunity is amazing, I can’t believe it. Football is my life. If I didn’t have it, I don’t know what I’d be doing with myself,” Sullivan commented.

Mechell was invited to the Sydney finals after impressing coaches in the Auckland trials.

“It’s what I do – I don’t really do anything else. I just play football, it’s everything to me,” says Mechell, “I want to take it all the way and this is just a stepping stone hopefully. I really want this,” he said.

The showcase is an opportunity for these players to not only receive guidance and training from elite coaches and players, but also to fight for a place at the Nike Academy based at St. George’s Park in the

UK, the home ground for England’s National Team. The winners will take their places at the Nike Academy Most Wanted showcase from November 25th to November 27th with intent to earn a position at the Nike Academy.

Since 2009, The Nike Academy Most Wanted has provided thousands of young footballers access to elite training opportunities, and thus far 58 Nike Academy alumni have gone on to earn professional contracts.

The Nike Academy was the starting whistle for Australian Socceroo, Tom Rogic when he was discovered through the program in 2012.

Photography - Ultra Football

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