Elite Tournaments has had a relationship with Ohio Soccer Moms and Dads since the beginning. Although they do not have any events in Ohio, their events are favorites for Ohio based teams and for me in particular. I have attended 10 of their events with my children and their teams and they have always been class act events. My favorite event, which has become a staple is the Southampton Cup. The Southampton Cup is an amazing event not only because of the incredible work done by Elite Tournaments but also because of the relationship that they have with Southampton FC and the incredible England Premiership presence that is on display throughout the weekend. It is understandable why Ohio teams love to attend this event.
A highlight of the Southampton Cup is the ability to showcase player talents while being seen and evaluated by actual Southampton FC coaches and staff. Based on these evaluations a handful of players are selected to attend an Elite Tournaments Camp in Southampton, England where players train and play at the esteemed Staplewood Training Ground. The same training facilities used by Southampton FC.
About the Event
While the opportunity to visit and train in England is an exciting one, the Southampton Cup itself is worth attending on its own. The event is held each year at Covenant Park in Baltimore, MD and across nearby facilities of equal quality. With multiple flights from U9-U15 the event is bracketed well and competitive. Upon arrival at Covenant Park Players and parents are presented with an impressive midway including your typical vendors but also Premier League games are projected on giant two story tall screens, a trailer full of Southampton FC information and an opportunity to test yourself against actual Southampton FC and Premier League Academy players back in England with biomarkers and simple speed, agility and explosiveness testing.
Trophy presentations are one of the most fun parts of the event. Much like the presentations you see at venues like ESPN’s Wide World of Sports in Florida or a Super Cup event, Southampton Cup presentation does not hold back on the fanfare and is exciting for both players and parents alike. Although winning is exciting, there is the added “Player of the Match” awarded to distinguished players after each game. Finals that take place at satellite fields might not have quite as much excitement associated with them.
Southampton Cup 2022
This exciting event is held on the first weekend of December. In 2022 Ohio had two clubs attend and they are both OSMD Insiders. This winter Columbus United partnered with several local clubs to put together extended programming for 2009 and 2010 girls interested in elite opportunities and called the program United City. Both the 2009 and 2010 Girls won their divisions. On the boys side, Sporting Columbus sent their very talented 2010 boys team who were also Southampton Cup Champions.
My son last attended in 2019 and their team had the opportunity to play against Southampton FCs Academy team in a consolation game. There have been many years when Southampton has brought their academy players to attend the event. It is always a treat to see local kids have the opportunity to play with and against such talented players.
Elite Tournaments Training Camp at Southampton FC
This year 4 boys from Sporting Columbus were selected to attend the Southampton FC trip scheduled for later this spring.
In 2019 my son took part in this event and it was such a great experience. The boys attended a professional and U23 match where they announced his 12th birthday inside the massive and amazing St. Mary’s Stadium. They toured Southampton and traveled to London by coach for sightseeing. The best part was touring Staplewood training ground where Southampton FC first team players like James Ward Prouse, Che Adams and Stuart Armstrong. The players were able to meet Armstrong after training one day and get signatures and pictures.
This year Elite Tournaments will be hosting players at their Southampton FC Camp this spring and fall. If your player or club is interested in learning more about Elite Tournaments, this camp or future events you can reach out to them by email email@example.com.