Vidic advice for United girls
Yvette Loukes, 14, Hollie Massey and Jenni Park, both 13, were each selected after impressing for the Reds and, as a reward, were invited to meet Nemanja Vidic to receive some tips about playing football at the highest level.
“You have to train hard to improve yourself,” Nemanja told the girls. “It is important to enjoy training and playing with your team-mates to get the benefits from the sessions, which will help when you progress to a higher level.”
Vida also explained how his international career began: “I was 15 when I moved from my hometown to play for Red Star Belgrade and I was 19 when I first played for Serbia. I played against Italy in the European Championships and after that game everything changed. People started noticing me.”
After the meeting, Hollie from Congleton admitted she felt inspired to emulate the Old Trafford hero. “It was great meeting Vidic,” she said. “He made us realise how important it is to make the most out of this opportunity and to put everything into it.”
Team-mate Yvette (right) has excelled at United for five seasons, despite suffering from diabetes, a condition that forces her to constantly monitor her blood levels whilst playing and training for the Reds. However, as she explains, it’s never going to stop her from succeeding.
“It doesn’t affect me playing football, I just have to do blood tests before and during training or a match and if I need to take some insulin or Lucazade tablets I will stop and do so. My coaches and teammates all know about my diabetes so if I’m sitting out, they all know why and are supportive.”
Emma Fletcher, who runs the Girls’ Centre of Excellence, is full of praise for Yvette’s efforts and attitude. “Yvette has also been really helpful with enquiries we have had from girls with diabetes who have contacted the centre to ask if it would affect them playing football.
“We’ve got on to Yvette for her advice and she tells them it’s fine to play as normal as long as they do an extra blood test and maybe have more sugar. She’s been absolutely brilliant. ”
Following the training camp we caught up with Yvette again who enthused, “It felt amazing to put the England kit on. Only 24 girls got picked out of 31 Centres of Excellence across the country, so to get picked makes me feel really proud.”
The next stage for the girls is to hope to be selected for the next training camp where they will be given the opportunity to represent their country in an under-15s match against Wales. We wish them all the best!
Find out more about girls' football.