BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM: Under-9 junior soccer teams in their first game of the season on Saturday.
BEND IT LIKE BECKHAM: Under-9 junior soccer teams in their first game of the season on Saturday. Lucy Rutherford

Country youngsters tackling the world game

Football: For young brothers Jerome and Jerold Medel, Roma Junior Soccer League is a fantastic stepping stone to progress their natural athleticism and agility into a more competitive environment in later years.

The first game of the season kicked off at Noel Kerr Oval on Saturday, with under-6, U9, U11 and U12 players given an opportunity to learn fundamental movement and agility patterns.

Regional development officer for Football Queensland southwest, David Nugent believes junior soccer gives country boys and girls fantastic social opportunities, as well as a great building block to move to a higher playing level.

"You look at any of our players from the south west that have played for Queensland or Australia and when they were juniors they were playing soccer,” Nugent said.

"Soccer players are very dynamic because they have to move all over the place which gives them the agility the other football codes love.”

Nugent said he is excited about the possibility of introducing carnivals between Roma, St George, Chinchilla, Kingaroy and Dalby junior teams for the first time this year.

"It's a fantastic opportunity for our regional areas and will give the Roma and St George kids opportunities to play against other teams,” he said

"Many of the players we get coming out from rural towns are home schooled by their parents so this is a great way for them to interact with other kids.”