February 17, 2023 3:00 PM

2023 FUTURES Updates by Doug Reed

United Futsal’s FUTURES Faced FC Barcelona
2023 FUTURES Updates by Doug Reed

United Futsal’s FUTURES Faced FC Barcelona

There are few youth players worldwide that can say they tested themselves against the talents of FC Barcelona but a selective group from across the United States earned this opportunity. It was all part of United Futsal’s Futures programme held in Spain.

The players, who went through a selection process to identify the best futsal talents in the country, had a day of training with a selection of top Spanish and Brazilian youth coaches on arriving in Spain before playing games against FC Barcelona’s youth teams.

It was an immediate test of their abilities and what they had learned during the first day of training. It is the type of challenge that is fundamental to build the mental toughness and resilience required to be a successful in both sports and further afield.

And whilst it was always going to be an almost impossible task to overcome the product of one of the world’s most advanced youth development systems, the American players stepped up and, after slowly adapting to the increased intensity from what they are used to back in the States, showed glimpses of the talent they possess.

Technically, there was little difference between the teams with the Futures stars demonstrating some electric dribbling moves including a stunning rainbow, the futsal move made famous in the soccer world by Brazil’s Neymar.

However, where the Barca youth players were far superior was their game understanding which allowed them to maximize the output of the technical skills. Their ball circulation and combination play, underpinned by how they constantly opened passing options and spaces off the ball, had clearly been developed to exceptional levels under the supervision of their world class coaches.

The Futures teams looked incredibly dangerous on the fast break but struggled when presented with the challenge of breaking down a well-positioned defense. In those moments they struggled to benefit from the exceptional technical ability they possess with the ball.

It was a valuable and eye-opening experience for the Futures players where they were able to identify the areas they need to work on, and the level required to be on a pathway to becoming a professional player. Fortunately, they followed these games with a week of training working on these aspects with top coaches. It will certainly give them a unique advantage to have this experience on their CV when they return to compete back home.


Doug Reed is a professional futsal player from England whose passion for the game has taken him across the world to report on top stories and provide insights from someone inside. Visit his website at www.dougreedfutsal.com or follow him on social media via @DougReedFutsal.

Latest NEWS