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Monday 2nd June 2014 – Kingston, Jamaica: As one of the footballing giants in the region, Haiti has always been a force to be reckoned with and, according to Senior International Football Development Officer for the Chelsea FC Foundation and Digicel Kick Start Clinics Head Coach, David Monk, the players selected at this year’s Digicel Kick Start Clinics will certainly live up to that reputation when they go the Academy.

David commented; “We certainly had high expectations of the players from Haiti as they demonstrated their worth at last year’s Academy where they won the three-a-side competition as well as the individual player award which was won by Dede Kenley, who is now training with Haiti’s national team on a full time basis. The passion shown by the Haitian players is admirable.”

Monk also pointed out that their passion was motivated by more than a love for the game, saying; “When you travel through Haiti’s communities, you see young boys playing football in the streets and for most of them, football is their only hope – it is their one opportunity to better themselves in life. The self-belief and drive of these players gives them the edge, which is why they will push themselves to do their best every time they play.

He continued; “You can feel as a coach that these players are the ‘difference-makers’ in a team. These are the ones who will fight for you from the start of the game all the way to the final whistle. They have a strong sense of pride in their country and a real passion for football – using the Digicel Kick Start programme as an opportunity to expand their game within the region and the world.”


He also spoke about his expectations of the boys when they get to the Academy; “One of the key elements of a good team is the “spine” – which includes the goalkeeper, centre back, centre midfielder and centre forward – and last year’s Haitian players were the backbone of the team. They are the instrumental players that direct the team, create chances and are disciplined enough to defend, as well as attack. We feel that the Haitian players selected will improve on the performance of their predecessors and, even though they will face more competition this year with more countries participating in the Academy, we still think Haiti will produce one of the top three players for this year’s Digicel Academy.”

The Digicel Kick Start Clinics – now in their eighth year – see thousands of aspiring young footballers from across 15 countries in the Caribbean and Central America try out for their chance to travel to the Digicel Academy in Barbados and train under top coaches from Barclays Premier League side, Chelsea FC.

During the week-long Digicel Academy, the top 42 boys from across the region get the chance of a lifetime to receive intensive training under coaches from Barclays Premier League side, Chelsea Football Club.


Digicel Group Limited is a leading global communications provider with operations in 32 markets in the Caribbean, Central America and Asia Pacific. After 13 years of operation, total investment to date stands at over US$5 billion worldwide. The company is renowned for delivering best value, best service and best network.

Digicel runs a host of community-based initiatives across its markets and has set up Digicel Foundations in Jamaica, Haiti, Papua New Guinea and Trinidad and Tobago which focus on educational, cultural and social development programmes.

Digicel is the lead sponsor of Caribbean, Central American and Pacific sports teams and individuals including the world’s fastest man, Usain Bolt and Special Olympics teams throughout these regions. Digicel also sponsors the West Indies cricket team. 

Digicel is incorporated in Bermuda and its markets comprise: Anguilla, Antigua & Barbuda, Aruba, Barbados, Bermuda, Bonaire, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Curacao, Dominica, El Salvador, Fiji, French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Myanmar Nauru, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Suriname, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks & Caicos and Vanuatu. Digicel also has coverage in St. Martin and St. Barts in the Caribbean.