Much of the world is in the midst of football fever right now, as the World Cup just wound up this weekend. And watching the jubilation of German fans, and the heartbreak of Argentina fans, the entire world is mad about soccer.
Except perhaps in North America, where the World Cup is certainly noticed and enjoyed but not with the same fervour.
The United States team advancing beyond the first round was good for North American soccer, says Johnny Bradley, a coach from Challenger Sports in England, although there would likely be more excitement in Canada if a Canadian team were to make the World Cup.
Nevertheless, at the grass-roots level, the game is quite popular in North America, and played by millions of kids.
Bradley and his compatriot Jamie Lees were in Kimberley last week to provide a soccer camp. Bradley has actually been in town for eight weeks, working with Kimberley Minor Soccer.
They have both now left Kimberley and are headed to Victoria for another camp, much to the dismay of a couple of local soccer teams who had hoped to persuade the British duo to join their teams for the upcoming JulyFest tournament.
While here, Bradley and Lees taught a week-long skills camp.
Challenger Sports sends over a thousand coaches across North America each summer to teach soccer camps and impart the British love for the game.
“We are passionate about soccer in England,” Bradley said. “But the camps are all about fun too.”
Kimberley kids did seem to be enjoying themselves, especially when either one of their coaches missed a shot, or fell, during a pickup game prior to lunch break.
Challenger Sports British Soccer Camps are the most popular soccer camp in North America. Over 110,000 boys and girls will attend camp programs this summer.