Sixteen players from Northern NSW have been selected to participate in the Tokyo Under 14 International Youth Football Tournament commencing Wednesday, May 3rd 2017.
In previous years, teams representing NSW have consisted of players from Northern NSW Football and Football NSW, however, this year again the team will consist of all players from the Emerging Jets program, as Football NSW no longer has a pathway program for Hyundai A-League clubs.
The squad to represent NSW consists of 14 players from the Emerging Jets 14 year’s program and 2 players from the PlayStation®4 National Premier Leagues Youth competition, 1 player from Football Mid North Coast and 1 player from Broadmeadow Magic FC.
The side flys out for Japan this Sunday, April 30th and will arrive back in Australia on Monday, May 8th 2017.
The side will be attending the tournament at the invitation of the Tokyo Government, who extended the invite to the NSW State Government.
Northern NSW Football Technical Director, Michael Browne, who will be travelling along with the boys, believes this will be a valuable opportunity for the players.
“The tournament will give the players the opportunity to play against teams from other parts of the world and will be a fantastic experience for the youngsters,” Browne said.
“Many of these teams will have different approaches to playing the game and we are sure that this experience alone will be of enormous benefit to our players.”
“In the past, even with a combined group of NNSW and NSW players, the teams have struggled to make an impact on the tournament in terms of being close to winning, therefore, we have to be realistic regarding our expectations, however we are confident that the players will give a good account of themselves,” Browne concluded.
The Northern NSW players will compete alongside International squads from Beijing, Berlin, Cairo, Jakarta, Moscow, Paris, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Buenos Aires and local Japanese teams at Tokyo’s Komazawa Olympic General Sports Ground.
Timely results can be found and accessed here.
The selected team consists of:
Jacob Zissis (Charlestown, Emerging Jets)
Zahi Addis (Tyagarah, Emerging Jets)
Milo Bisogni (Bangalow, Emerging Jets)
Patrick Bond (Hamilton South, Emerging Jets)
Luke Townsend (Port Macquarie, Football Mid North Coast)
Sam Haren (New Lambton, Emerging Jets)
William Ingram (Cessnock, Emerging Jets)
Jay Kitcher (Adamstown, Emerging Jets)
Clancy Muddle (Blackalls Park, Emerging Jets)
Elliot Page (Kotara, Emerging Jets)
Tom Parkes (Warners Bay, Emerging Jets)
Oliver Rich (Hamilton, Emerging Jets)
Finnegan Todhunter (Dudley, Emerging Jets)
Caleb Trowbridge (Redhead, Emerging Jets)
Adam Zervas (Hamilton South, Emerging Jets)
Itay Folgin (Charlestown, Broadmeadow Magic FC)
Craig Deans – Head Coach
Michael Browne – Head of Delegation
Ross Hicks – Tour Manager
Elizabeth Sharpe – Physiotherapist
Photos can be found and accessed here.
Wednesday 3rd May 2017
NSW – 0 v Tokyo Training Centre – 2
NSW – 1 (goal scorer Adam Zervas) v J-League select – 2
Northern NSW Football’s Technical Director, Michael Browne said the teams faced on Day 1 would be their toughest opponents of the tournament.
“The players obviously knew that were going to face tough opponents in this tournament and that was certainly the case on day 1,” Browne said.
“Tokyo Training Centre were comfortable winners in game 1 and despite going down to a late goal in the 2nd game against J-League select it was a game our opponents dominated from start to finish.”
“The two teams faced today will finish 1st & 2nd in the group and results on day 2 will determine positions 3, 4 & 5 in the group.”
“Hopefully, the players can step up tomorrow and conclude the group with some positive performances,” Browne concluded.
The team plays Mamelodi Sundowns from South Africa and Miyagi from Japan on day 2, Thursday 4th May.
Thursday 4th May 2017
NSW – 0 v Mamelodi Sundowns from South Africa – 1
NSW – 0 v Miyagi from Japan – 0
Northern NSW Football’s Technical Director, Michael Browne said the boys performed a lot better than they did compared to their first few games.
“Day 2 saw NSW play Mamelodi Sundowns from South Africa in the first game. The African side dominated possession and deserved their 1-0 victory. Technically there was little difference between the players however the African team performed better in athleticism and had a more aggressive attitude,” Browne said.
“The second game saw the players get their first point with a 0-0 draw against Miyagi from Japan. The attitude and commitment shown by the players was very pleasing.”
The result meant the team came 5th in their group. The boys now head into the playoff rounds on Friday where NSW will play against Tokyo Junior High School.
Friday 5th May 2017
NSW – 2 v Tokyo Junior High School – 1
Northern NSW Football’s Technical Director, Michael Browne said the boys were thrilled with their first win of the tournament.
“The players were delighted to get their first win of the tournament,” Browne said.
“Two goals from Tom Parkes saw NSW take a commanding lead, however, a late reply from Tokyo Junior High School made it a nervy last few minutes. This was undoubtedly the best performance so far and the players are looking forward to playing Jakarta tomorrow.”
Saturday 6th May
NSW – 0 v Jarkata – 1
Northern NSW Football Technical Director, Michael Browne was disappointed in the end result of the tournament.
“It was a disappointing way to end the tournament going down 1-0 to a limited Jakarta side. NSW dominated possession but lacked creativity, a result which saw the boys end up in 18th place,” Browne said.
After a tough tournament, the boys will head home in positive spirits from gaining experience in how other teams across the world play.