Adelaide United stars visit Port Lincoln

Adelaide United is making the most of the Liberty A-League international break, getting across to Port Lincoln to spend some time with the local football community.

Coach Adrian Stenta, captain Isabel Hodgson and goalkeeper Annalee Grove were among a travelling contingent that also included former Red and current Head of Junior Development Marcelo Carrusca.

The group spent Tuesday and Wednesday in the Eyre Peninsula city, running a free community clinic at Kirton Oval which was well attended by more than 70 children ranging in age from eight to 13.

The group then visited St Joseph’s School to run the United in Schools program, which shares important messages with students about wellbeing, resilience, belonging, friendship and accomplishment.

Stenta –a qualified teacher – also took part in a special coach education session for local coaches.

While it was a whirlwind trip, Stenta said it was important for the club to make the most of the opportunity to get to regional areas.

“We’ve been running some clinics for the local footballers and local children and spending some time with some of the local coaches here in the community and running some coach education with them,” he said.

“It’s been a busy couple of days also spending some time in schools as well with our United in Schools program.

“It’s really important for us to make the most of the time we have had in Port Lincoln because regional communities often get starved for opportunities like this with professional sporting teams, and we pride ourselves on being the team for all South Australians.

“Just because people live in a rural or regional area doesn’t mean that they should miss out so we were really excited and happy to get to Port Lincoln.”

Hodgson was one of the more popular visitors with the local kids and enjoyed the experience.

“It’s been pretty exciting,” she explained. “I think it’s super important for us to get out to the regional communities to make sure everyone’s involved in football and you never know, you could find the next superstar out here.

“It’s great for them to get a free clinic and meet some of the players and get to experience Adelaide United, and great for us to be here too.

“I put (the kids) through some tough drills but hopefully they had some fun and that’s the main thing.”

Adelaide United is grateful to the City of Port Lincoln and the Port Lincoln Soccer Association for making the trip possible.

Port Lincoln Mayor Diana Mislov thanked the club for visiting and hoped to see players in the region again soon.

“I would just like to thank the Adelaide United Football Club for coming to Port Lincoln and sharing not just the talents and skill development for our juniors and our soccer participants, but also the really, really valuable modules that are part of the United in Schools program,” she said.

“This has been a fantastic program, especially to have some role models, some of the key individual players come and actually present in front of our students has been something really significant.

“We do hope that they come back in the future and develop more programs for our young people.”