Sportsnet Magazine Feature Now Online!

In April, Sportsnet Magazine writer Ryan Dixon and photographer Alexi Hobbs spent a week with us and the Gulu United Youth Academy.

Their finished product, GULU RISES, is a 10-page feature that hit newsstands in June and is now online!.

Sportsnet Magazine’s ‘big read’ on Gulu United opens, “In a land where terror reigned and children killed, life is starting to get back to normal. A new soccer academy has opened, and the Canadian responsible sees it as much more than charity — he believes there’s money to be made.”

CLICK HERE (or on the image above) to read the full feature article.

Green Lights, Red Lights and Two Wins

On Sunday, July 7th, Gulu United hosted a pair of matches at Gulu High School, with both efforts being another big step forward for our youth sides.

After spending two weeks with Brentford FC Academy coach Dan Wright, with a focus on defending (green light / red light) and problem solving, the boys took responsibility for their game and each other . . . and it showed.

In the opener, the U17s applied constant high pressure, combined with composure in front of their own goal to earn a comfortable 2-0 win over Fields of Dreams (a local all-star side). With plenty of possession, Gulu United finally broke the deadlock off of a corner kick, with Isaac Bradbury applying a powerful finish with his head.

Derick Ocan, who was dangerous all afternoon, put the match away early in the second half. ‘Brown’ latched onto a perfect through ball from Justin Opiro and neatly chipped it pasted the charging goalkeeper.

In the nightcap, the U21s dominated the ball and bossed the midfield for a 1-0 victory over local men’s side Nile FC, who represent the local army barracks.

Giving away plenty of size and experience didn’t seem to matter, with both Francis Onekalit and Kipper Luwalo coming close in the opening minutes.

Gulu United finally got their reward early in the second half when Onekalit clipped a ball past the keeper (and sacrificing his body in the process), leaving it for Dradiga Otim to tap in.

More match reports, photos and video are coming soon!

Free Brentford FC Coaching Clinic in Gulu

This is a FREE Professional Youth Football Coaching Clinic in Gulu, Uganda with Dan Wright of the Brentford FC Youth Academy. This FREE professional youth football coaching clinic is open to all coaches in the region. This event is being hosted by the Gulu United Football Club. The session will be run by academy coach Dan Wright of England’s Brentford Football Club, a partner club of Gulu United FC. Dan will lead a two-hour on-field session that will include an introduction to the youth training program at Brentford FC, followed by an on-field training session — and will conclude with a discussion and question and answer session.

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Clinic Topic: “FINDING SPACE TO ATTACK THROUGH THE MIDFIELD”

Date: Saturday, June 27th

Time: 10:00 am (SHARP!) to 12:00 noon

Location: Gulu United Training Ground (St. Joseph’s College, Layibi)

Registration: Registration will be open between 3pm to 6pm ONLY on Friday, June 26th at the Gulu United Training Ground (St. Joseph’s College, Layibi).

Contact: For more information please contact James Obalo, Gulu United Public Relations Director at 0772.347.179.

Gulu United’s Triple Play In Kitgum

On June 20th, Gulu United ventured to Kitgum for a triple header of matches against ‘select’ sides that included the best players in the district. And we have a little video to share courtesy of Brentford FC Academy coach Dan Wright.

The Gulu United U15s and U17s took on teams 2, 3 and even 4 years their senior, and still dominated the ball. The U15s managed a 1-1 draw with Owen Bradbury scoring the equalizer.

Continue reading

Starting from Scratch: Academy Football 101

So, you want a start a football academy? Well, we do. And, we have.

On his personal blog, Gulu United Academy Director Adrian Bradbury has started to share our journey and the evolution of what we deliver on the pitch — and here’s hoping you can learn from all of our mistakes along the way. This is definitely going to be ‘Academy Football 101′ — simply an introduction to building from the bottom up.

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CLICK HERE to find weekly updates on everything from our structure and philosophy to our planning and sample session plans.

And lets be clear, there is no ‘right’ or ‘one’ way to do youth academy football.

There are however, two non-negotiables and they are (i) a commitment to a long-term vision (and living with the very public short-term failures and criticism) and (ii) doing the work every single day.

Term One Report : Off to a Great Start!

In May we shared this ‘Term One Report’ with our founding supporters, and today we’re making it public. When you click here or on the image below, you’ll find a quick summary of what we’ve been able to accomplish in just four short months.

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We highlight everything from our academy and coaches to our education and community partners. Sure, there have been plenty of ‘hills and valleys’, but our direction is clearly up! Thanks again for your ongoing support.

“Giving the boots” . . . to Gulu United!

Thank you for “giving the boots” — to Gulu United!

Our fields here are often more dirt than grass, and the youth academy boots take a beating. We make great use of the a local cobbler, but that only goes so far. So, we continue to need a steady stream of ‘gently used’ boots and as you can see from these photos on Facebook, we’re well outfitted!

A huge thank you goes out to Soccer Academy Alliance Canada, Power FC, Sigma FC, Beachside United, Mount Hamilton, South Simcoe United FC, Markham Lightning, SC Toronto, Durham College / UOIT, and all of the individual donors (and I’m sure I missed a few).

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Your support is making a huge impact here in northern Uganda. And please, keep the boots coming!

If you would like to support Gulu United, please GET IN TOUCH.