Marveld Youth Tournament 24-26 May, 2013
The Marveld Youth Tournament is a highly respected U15 tournament which has seen some big names play there of the course of its history. The tournament has been organized for over 30 years now and Manchester United have sent a squad for the last eleven years and in 2012, United finished in second spot when they were beaten 4-0 in the final by a much stronger Bayer 04 Leverkusen.
Some well-known United players who have played on the fields of Marveld are Danny Welbeck, Tom Cleverley, Robin van Persie, Nicky Ajose and Alexander Buttner – so it is certainly a chance to get to see the potential stars of the future.
This year, United travelled with the following 16-man squad:
Arthur, Barrett, Dearnley, Johnson, Kenyon, Makela, Pierce (GK), Purvis (GK), Rankin-Costello, Savill, Smith, Taylor, Thompson, Warren, Whelan and Williams (C).
Their coach was coach is the very experienced Tommy Martin and the team was placed in a group with Ajax, Vitesse, FC Twente, Kashiwa Reysol (Japan) and Atletico Paranaense (Brazil).
Manchester United – Vitesse 1-1
United played Vitesse (Alexander Buttner’s previous club) in their first group game. Vitesse started well and played a physical game that stopped United from playing their own game and the Dutch side went into half time 1-0 up.
But from the start of the second half United put more pressure on Vitesse which paid off as United were awarded a penalty. Makela equalised from the spot. Among the spectators was Alexander Buttner, who was watching his nephew playing for Vitesse.
Manchester United – FC Twente 1-1
FC Twente were United’s second opponents of the first day of this year’s Marveld tournament. United started the game very well and put their pressure to good purpose when Makela netted his second goal of the tournament. In the second half, FC Twente started off as the better side, clearly not taking the scoreline for granted, and a great strike from outside the box left Purvis without chance. At the end of the first day of the tournament, United found themselves placed second in the group behind leaders Atletico Paranaense.
Manchester United – Ajax 2-0
The first game of the second day, United played legendary Dutch club Ajax. United fired out of the blocks and Sam Smith opened the scoreline in the first minute of the game. United bossed Ajax and the youthful Dutch players couldn’t find play their game. Adam Savill scored the second goal for United that sealed victory.
Kashiwa Reysol – Manchester United 0-1
2nd up for United on the second day was Kashiwa Reysol from Japan. It was a well balanced game throughout the entire game. Both sides had some chances, but it was a late United goal from winger Zach Dearnley which separated the 2 sides. Kashiwa Reysol had practically no time to come up with an answer as United took the spoils.
Atletico Paranaense – Manchester United 1-0
The final game of the second day was against the group leaders, Atletico Paranaense. United started the game with a shuffled team but proved a sturdy test for the young Brazilians but a fluke goal ended United’s hopes of finishing as leaders of this group. United finished second in the group but progressed to the semi’s where they faced PSG from France.
PSG – Manchester United 1-0
PSG played a very physical game but United matched it with some quality football in the first game of the third and final day. PSG committed lots of fouls from the start of the game but United weren’t impressed and had some really good opportunities. Unfortunately, they couldn’t put them in the back of the net. On the other end, Greg Purvis pulled of a few stunning saves which kept United in the game.
But, in the final minutes of the game, Purvis couldn’t handle a great powerful strike from distance and PSG scored on the rebound. Very unfortunate. United certainly matched the winners of the other group but it wasn’t to be.
Manchester United – Mexico 1-3 (3rd place)
Mexico played some good football from the start and United found it difficult to get into their own game. Mexico proved to be very dangerous on the offensive which paid off as they opened the scoreline. United started to get more into the game and put pressure on the young Mexicans which resulted in an equalizer from the spot.
But straight after the game resumed, Mexico re-established the scoreline with another goal. Tommy Martin had his work cut out for him at half-time. The final blow came late on in the second half as the Mexicans made it 1-3 in the second half.
United finished the tournament as fourth and received the Fair Play-award.
I’ve been going to this tournament for 11 years now, since United started participating at Marveld and I must say, this is certainly one of the better United sides that played at the tournament.
They were a bit unfortunate at times and certainly deserved a place in the finals. Young captain Ro-Shaun Williams was my player of the tournament in the young United team but there were also a few others who stood out above the rest. Dearnley and Makela for example. All in all, it was a great tournament and I’m already looking forward to next year.