The annual youth championship organised by the Hellenic Football Federation (EPO) is proving a success for Greece's grassroots game, with 50 local associations taking part this time.
Each association is represented by a squad consisting of at least 50 schoolboy footballers aged between 14 and 16, in a tournament which not only promotes the grassroots game thanks to the ability that is showcased but also helps to set the technical and moral criteria for the development of young players.
The championship also serves as a means of identifying future talent, with players required to pass through this system in order to qualify for the Under-17, U19 and U21 national teams. It benefits too from a junior equivalent, which has attracted about 3,500 children from all 53 associations for its latest staging.
The presence of the participants' families and friends at matches, including children of all ages, is another encouraging sign for the promotion of the sport. During the summer, local associations, along with some of Greece's most notable clubs, will also organise grassroots tournaments for boys aged eight to 18 and girls between eight and 11, with around 2,000 expected to take part.
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