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A Franklin success

Franklin U19 player Lance Kraakman

Franklin U19 player Lance Kraakman in action for the first team last year

A reader contacted me yesterday to alert me to this piece in the Franklin and North Waikato Post. It’s about a talented young footballer from Waiuku, by the name of Jake McCoy, who appears to have a bright future ahead of him!

The reader was keen to point out that Jake is a former Waiuku talent who came up through the age groups and “had to leave the area to further his skills.”

He returned to Waiuku a few years ago, and last season he captained the Franklin Under 19 side – a team that saw several players return to the Franklin Area from playing outside the region.

Obviously this is in response to my post of a couple of weeks ago which highlighted Waiuku’s departure from Franklin United and some of the reasons why this occurred. One of the key concerns Franklin sceptics hold is a perception that the use of player payments to bring so-called mercenaries into the first team last year ran contrary to the raison d’être of the joint venture.

The other week I tried as hard as I could to not take sides in this dispute. You might think me a coward for sitting on the fence but I have valued friends on both sides of it and I don’t see any point in wading into this too much further!

But having said that, Franklin’s project was always going to be a long term one and the Under 19 team is key to it, so it’s great to start hearing about some Franklin United success stories coming out of the woodwork.

I hope that everyone involved in the beautiful game in deepest South Auckland wants to see football in the region do well and is motivated by that rather than personalities or small town parochialism. If that’s the case I’m sure they would all join me in wishing Jake every success as well as hoping that many other talented young players are developed in the region by whatever club vehicle gets the job done.

Categories: Youth Football

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Enzo Giordani

A grassroots football enthusiast based in Auckland, New Zealand, and a fan of the most magnificent club on earth - A.S. Roma. More info (including e-mail address) can be found here: https://in-the-back-of-the.net/about/

3 replies

  1. Jake was a huge part of Franklin Utd last season. Not only captaining the U19 team, but also featuring regularly at Reserve and 1st team level in the NRFL. He’s one of several Franklin Utd U19 players who also appeared in the first team and Reserve team last season.

  2. This is great for young Jake and proof the concept is starting to work. Not having the opportunity to hone his skills at U19 level under the guidance of Tam and be exposed to NRFL football on the Saturday (and at training) has clearly helped his development.

    This is the piece of the puzzle the neigh-sayers are missing. They look at the Prem squad in isolation and slam the approach.

    Yes last years Prem squad had non-Waiuku/Pukekohe based players but that wasn’t promised to anyone and principally driven by a Wiauku AFC bailout long before it ‘took-effect’. The aim of the Prem/Reserve squads at Franklin was first survival then to be competitive. Therefore securing NRFL football in the region for the years to come and allowing the predominantly local base of youth players to be able to access NRFL football in the future (or now if they have the ability).

    Better yet (as this article points out), many U19 players returned to the region to play. Jake in particular was at Central for some years. Yes he returned and played in a Waiuku shirt but that was at a time Waiuku were fighting for survival – not conducive to youth development (albeit it hardened him to a degree).

    Young Lance Kraakman (shown in the picture) came on leaps and bounds. Other youngsters like Kartik etc are on the fringe, it’s looking very bright down at Bledisloe.

  3. Interesting you say he returned to Waiuku when they were fighting relegation!
    Jake made his debut for Waiuku Vs FHM at right back in the same year they gained promotion to NRFL 1.
    Jake is a top lad and talented footballer.

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