September 24, 2020

Legendary soccer player scouting in Cayman

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Jamaican “Reggae Boy” Fitzroy Simpson, says although Caymanians love football, it’s not yet a way of life.

And he says to improve the standard of players here, we must first improve the standards of pitches and training facilities.

Mr. Simpson, who was born in Bradford, England, has an illustrious and decorated football career, which spans over two decades.

The 41 year old, ex-professional football player shared with iNews his thoughts on Cayman’s football standards as well as observations he has made since his arrival.

“I am here to observe talent. The reception to my stay here has been quite flattering,” he said.

“The Under-13’s here are very talented, they will be in our training session tomorrow.

“Everybody loves the game of football in the Cayman Islands, but loving it and making it your life is a massive difference.

“If you want to develop your football the structure has to be right.

“We need to address the training facility and the pitches.

“I think that the major distinction of football in the United Kingdom, is that it is a way of life, everything about it is survival.

“I now have my own football-training academy, Soccer Matrix, where I teach both basic and advanced techniques in soccer.

“The tutoring is somewhat academic, as each player is recorded and monitored through video analysis.”

Asked about the feeling of being revered as an integral part of the Jamaican “Reggae Boys” historic qualification for the World Cup football tournament in 1998, Mr. Simpson said: “In life you think back and you say well, Ryan Giggs has never graced a World Cup field and he’s a great player who worked on his game daily.

“Remember, the Jamaica Reggae Boys did not just play in the World Cup, we were ranked number 16 in the world in 1997-1998.”

English based players, Fitzroy Simpson, Paul Hall, Deon Burton and Robbie Earl created a powerful injection of talent and experience which helped to earn Jamaica a spot in the 1998 Word Cup football tournament in France.

The former midfielder has represented teams such as Swindon Town, Portsmouth and Manchester City Football Clubs in England.

Between 1992–93, Swindon Town Football Club sold Fitzroy Simpson to Premier League giants, Manchester City.

Mr. Simpson’s accolades include his participation in the highly competitive Spanish Football league. He has also helped to coach popular soccer team, Charlton Athletics.

In an interview with iNews, Manager of the Cayman Islands senior Men’s Team, Mr. Mark Campbell, applauded the football legend for his visit.

Mr. Campbell also added that the presence of the Reggae Boy could very well be a morale booster for the Cayman Islands team.

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