This month, the Guernsey Schools U15 squad will make their annual trip to Gothenburg, Sweden to take part in the Gothia Cup, thanks to sponsorship from Louvre.
The Gothia Cup is the world’s largest international youth football tournament. This year 1,692 teams from 78 nations will take part, playing 4,786 matches in total. In 2018, the Guernsey squad won six consecutive games and reached the play-off stage of the competition before being beaten by Kinna IF.
Louvre Group is sponsoring the Guernsey team for a sixth consecutive year and coach Mark Ingrouille acknowledges that without the fund administrator’s continued support, the team would not be able to play at this special tournament.
The squad has been training hard to prepare, with sessions focused on a variety of scenario-based practice drills and learnings from last year’s competition.
“We have the benefit of four students who competed last year. They are passing on their experiences and guidance to the new members of the squad to maximise their opportunity,” says coach Mark Ingrouille.
“The squad has a good balance of players who are able to play in different positions which give us as staff plenty of options and formations to use when required.
“The coaching team has been really pleased with the team’s progress since October, this is ultimately the reward for their dedication and commitment to developing throughout the year. All we hope for is that the students enjoy themselves and get to show what they can do on a world stage.”
This year the team will face Sweden, Germany and Brazil in the group stages, all tough teams which will test Guernsey’s skill and nerve.
Kevin Gilligan, Managing Director of Louvre Fund Services, says: “The Gothia Cup is a highlight of the youth football calendar, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience for Guernsey’s under-15 players.
“It’s not just about the football, the squad will meet players from around the world, experience different cultures and gain confidence. We are delighted to continue our support of the team and wish them luck at the tournament.”
The team is set to travel to Gothenburg on Friday 12 July.