St. John’s Antigua- It will cost Antigua & Barbuda Football Association (ABFA) in excess of US $50,000 to put on a two-week training camp at the IMG Soccer Academy located in Bradenton, Florida ahead of their June 8 semi-final World Cup Qualifying match against the USA.
This is according to General Secretary Gordon “Banks” Derrick who said the senior national team, which leaves for the facility on May 25, will have full access to all the amenities on offer ahead of the important opening fixture.
“The cost of the camp is going to work out to be approximately US $51,000 and it works out to be approximately US $91 per person per day and that’s inclusive of all the meals, the accommodation, (and) transportation from the airport to the hotel which is going to be in Sarasota. There will be three vans available for their use throughout the entire camp; use of the fields, the physio rooms, the audiovisual rooms; as a matter of a fact, entire use of the entire facility will be at their disposal,” he said.
Though seemingly high, the cost, according to Derrick, has been drastically reduced due only to connections made through Antigua Barracuda FC and its USL affiliates on behalf of ABFA and the senior national team.
“We only got this price really because of the Barracuda connection with the USL and the USL’s connection with the IMG. They are all an integral part of one and as a result we have been able to pass that on which was always the intention; that whatever things Barracuda benefits from that the national team can get and that is how it will be done,” the GS said.
Those England-based players who have already committed to represent the country during the upcoming semis will join the team in Florida for the two-week stint ahead of the USA match.
IMG Soccer Academy allows athletes to live and train at the country’s premier soccer training facility. The property features world-class playing surfaces, strength and conditioning facilities, video lecture halls, resident and dining halls, and a student recreation centre located next to a 25-metre pool.