When the COVID-19 pandemic first began to make headlines, as it spread around the world, there were many questions of whether or not the Surf Cup International (SCI) event was going to happen as planned at the end of 2021. This event already took years of planning as it was, and then all of the sudden, there became an instant need to ensure the event would be both successful and, even more importantly, safe. Flash-forward to a little over a year from then, and IDA just wrapped up their premier event in Salou, Spain, with incredible competition and zero positive Covid tests for the 400 participants leaving the event.
The inaugural IDA event hosted 48 teams from 7 countries – USA, Spain, Portugal, France, Lithuania, Greece, and Mongolia. Professional youth academies like Paris Saint Germain, Barcelona, Benfica, Athletic Bilbao, Atletico Madrid, RCD Espanyol, and Mallorca all attended the prestigious U12 – U14 event. With such quality competition, one could only expect the event to be nothing short of a massive success, and that’s exactly what it was!
“Even with all of the travel restrictions and other outside factors that could hinder the event, we knew there were enough quality teams here and enough experience within our staff to ensure we were creating a safe and competitive environment,” said Jordi Gomez, IDA Tournament Director.
Here are the results:
- Benfica notched a convincing 5-1 win over Bilbao in the U12 Boys age group final
- RCD Espanyol took home a 3-1 final over Atletico Madrid in the U12 Girls age group
- RCD Espanyol also beat out Reus in the U13 Boys age group after drawing in regular time
- Valencia notched a 3-1 win over RCD Espanyol in the U14 Boys age group
- And, RCD Espanyol’s U14 Girls took home Espanyol’s third trophy of the event in a thrilling 1-0 win over Atletico madrid
Aside from the amazing action and great matches, the event also needed to be equally safe. The tournament wouldn’t be successful if thoughtful guidelines and regulations weren’t in place for teams to follow. Knowing this, IDA tournament directors and staff worked with government guidelines, and officials from all over the world, to ensure that the event would be run safely amidst a global pandemic. Over four-hundred people ended up attending the tournament, and all were tested prior to and post-event. Of the 400 who were tested, 400 of the tests came back negative. Ensuring that proper measures were taken to keep the tournament attendees and their families safe.
“We’re very pleased to hear everyone’s alright and back home safe. Having 400 tests come back negative just shows we all took the right steps and our plan to protect the attendees worked extremely well” stated David Stuart, another IDA Tournament Director.
As IDA looks to their next event, in Rome, Italy, they take the knowledge of what made the Salou event such a great success, and plan to apply those learnings going forward. If you are interested in joining some of the best youth academies from all over the world, and want to attend one of our events, please click the button below and fill out the form – we look forward to seeing you out there!