September 15, 2007

BREAKING NEWS! Michael Goes Pro!

Albirex Niigata Team Scout Mr. Kanda shakes hands with new pro-athlete Michael!

With the stroke of a pen on Tuesday, September 11th, 3rd year foreign student Michael Fitzgerald gave a whole new positive meaning to 9/11 when he signed his debut professional soccer player contract with Japan’s J-League team, Albirex Niigata!

Team scouts and management were on hand at Seiritsu Gakuen in Principal Fukuda’s office as Michael made his pro-soccer career come true. I believe he signed a pro reserve contract, and this will carry him through to Jan 2009, upon which time he will be able to resign with the team as a regular main player, switch to another team or go to a pro team overseas in another league.

Principal Fukuda, Michael & Albirex Niigata staff at Seiritsu!

Michael will attend a training camp in February 2008, and then return for his school graduation in early March. After which, he will move to Niigata to live in the team dorm with the younger players.

While a J-League team may only have 3 foreign players, as Albirex Niigata does already, as a pro reserve player under the age 20, the rules allow for a few extra non-main players.

Of course we at the school are overjoyed with Michael’s success, and we look forward to cheering him on from the stands every time Albirex Niigata comes to play in Tokyo, which is about once a month! I also really feel grateful to the Seiritsu’s soccer staff for training and supporting Michael so well for these past 2-1/2yrs, because he followed their guidance, put the work in and he now has a great result to show for it. To those who think it can’t be done, no, really, it can be done!


September 15, 2007

Michael's Summer of 2007!


The amazing weather this year with record breaking highs was a perfect time to be relaxing at the beach indulging yourself with big lunches, maybe putting on a few pounds before coming back to school. This was the summer for some...

But for the soccer boys and myself, it was all about school club training and the hopes of being able to pass our university trails or for other pro trails.

This summer has been the quickest of my life. We trained almost everyday of the summer break. Throughout the break we had 3 camps, the first of the camps was held at the SG training ground and consisted of 2 –a-day trainings going for 4 days.

The next camp was 10 days long all on the road which included a tournament; we won the tournament in which we participated, a memory which I won’t forget.

The last of the camps was again on the road, but this was only for 3 days, and it also went well, a lot of team bonding and helped in strengthening all ready strong team.

We also won Tokyo’s T-League with no losses throughout the whole season and only one draw, so pretty good on paper.

I myself went away to Niigata, to try out for the Albirex Niigata pro team. I must have done something right while I was there as am signing my pro contract this week! This is an out of this world experience and I am just so happy, I would like to thank all the people that have helped, the school Seiritsu, the coaches, Wynrs (my New Zealand soccer club), my family and especially mum and dad, without them none of this would have been possible.

This summer has been filled with more than I would have ever expected! I came to Japan 3 years ago and I wanted to do well in my soccer and school, so now I can say that I have almost completed my 3 years with no regrets about being here! I am now looking forward to the future!


September 14, 2007

Dylan gives Seiritsu a whirl!

Dylan getting the handle of 'peacing' every picture!

Hi, my name is Dylan (from New Zealand) and I have come to Seiritsu Gakuen for soccer trials to try to be accepted to come back next in the year 2008 for 3 years.

I am here for 3 weeks and while I am at Seiritsu I will train and play with the first year team. I love the lifestyle in Japan because everyone works as hard as they can so the competition and soccer level is very high.

School finishes at 12.30, apart from Monday when it finishes at 3.30. When school finishes at 12.30 we go to the grounds and train and Tuesday training is physical training so it is very hard work. At the moment it is very hot so it has been hard to acclimatize to the heat, especially when you are playing soccer in it. Your fitness level has to be very high. I hope to come to Seiritsu Gakuen next year a take the next step into the long road of becoming a professional soccer player.

While I am here I stay in the soccer player dormitory, where Michael Fitzgerald and a lot of other 1st, 2nd and 3rd year students live. There are 2 people to quite a small room, but it is quite good to have a room mate to talk to. The dormitory is at the grounds, which is also very handy because it is easy to train by yourself and there is a weights room and balls you can use as well. Training will usually run for around 3 hours, sometimes more sometimes less.

Hopefully I will come back to Japan next year and be a part of the amazing experience!


September 14, 2007

Ryosuke's Summer of 2007!

Ryosuke scanning for his name in a pro-soccer magazine... a few years early!

Hello everyone. Hope everything is going well. Recently we’ve had our summer holidays and boy was it hot! Here in Japan everyone trains and studies real hard even during the holidays! (not something I’m used to). People who do club sports have training nearly everyday, and the other people have extra lessons at school. Summer here is pretty much the same as normal school days.

I’ve just survived two weeks of double training under the hot scorching heat of a 40 degree sun. As obvious as it sounds, double training is when we have two, 2-3 hour trainings in one day. The first training started at 8:30am and the next started from 12:30pm. This was an unforgettable experience for me as back in New Zealand we would never have trained for 3 hours, let alone twice in one day! Although this was both physically and mentally exhausting, I know that it was worth all the hard work as I believe that this is why the Japanese are so fit and can concentrate for so long both on and off the pitch.

I’m finally getting used to the lifestyle here and I’m sure I will not regret the hard work of this summer.


September 14, 2007

Jason's Summer of 2007!

By wearing a J.LEAGUE team jersey, Jason is balancing his soccer dreams perhaps...

Hi guys. It’s been a will since my last post. Everything is going fine.

Just survived the Seiritsu summer holiday’s soccer program. We were off school for about 2 months and in those 2 months I became the fittest I have ever been in my life!

We played a lot of games and trained twice a day. It was a very hard schedule but it’s all the hard work that is going towards my dream of becoming a pro soccer player. I thought that the coaches pushed us hard during normal season when we have school, but the summer holidays were at another level.

The most memorable thing that we did was training twice a day in 35+ degree heat. Even some days it reached the ridiculous temperature of 40 degrees! I know that in Australia if it was anywhere near that kind of weather we definitely wouldn’t be training or even go out of our house. But this is Japan, where when they make a commitment to something they stick by it. That’s why Japan has the second largest economy in the world, after the US.

That’s all from me this month; I will keep you posted about life in Seiritsu High.

Jason Davidson



about Seiritsu

Seiritsu Gakuen is a private co-educational high school created in 1925 and it is located in Tokyo, Japan.

≫more info