ULVERSTON Leisure Centre's summer football coaching has proved so popular two children have come all the way from Italy to take part – twice.

Siblings India and James Zasini have been among those youngsters enjoying the fun coaching sessions this week, while visiting relatives in the town from Southern Europe.

The brother and sister did the same last year, and enjoyed it so much they were back again during these school holidays.

The Zasinis were among groups of between 10 and 20 who have headed down to the leisure centre to have a good kickabout.

Working with coaches Hannah Paling, Liam Matthews and Daniel Boal, the children – aged between five and 11, but split into older and younger groups so they are with players of similar ages and abilities – have played games, learned new skills and taken part in mini tournaments across the week.

They have even been quizzed on their knowledge of the game during their lunch-breaks – with one set of posers asking them to identify the kits of all the Premier League teams.

Paling has been happy with how the week has been going, on the back of a successful taster day at the start of the holidays and a week of multi-sport action.

“We always start with a big match,” she said. “We have a bit of a warm-up, then we split them up for a big game to get them playing.

“We also have a big game of Wembley, where the players pair up and we have one goalkeeper; then we did a time-trial on the first day, where we set up some cones and they have to dribble through them, and we timed them all – it's good for them to test their skills.

“After lunch, we had a mini-tournament with four teams and 10-minute games, where everyone plays each other once and then we go through to the semi-finals and final. Because there were only four players on the team, you get a lot of touches and everyone can get involved.”

She added: “We only had two girls on, but they enjoyed it, and we had the two kids who came over from Italy to visit their grandparents as well.

“They've all enjoyed it. We mixed the older and the younger players up for the tournament, so they have even teams, and the older ones help with getting the younger one involved – we had one who wasn't sure of the rules and one of the other took her to one side and helped explain it all. It's good to get them all involved.”

There will be one further day of football coaching at Ulverston Leisure Centre during the school summer holidays, on Friday, August 31, between 10am and 3pm.