Category: ISF

View from the Dugout: Matt Nash

Matt Nash took charge of his first game as International Surrey Football men’s coach last Saturday – and though the 3-2 defeat to Chagos Islands wasn’t the result we all wanted, there were plenty of positives to take from the performance.

We caught up with the boss a few days after the Chagos game to get his thoughts on the result.

What were you looking for in training?

Most players were still playing for their Sunday teams so it was all about just trying to find some new talent for what is effectively a new team. The squad for the first game only included four previous players and 12 debutants, which is something we were proud of in the performance as hardly anyone had ever played together before. Training helped us find players like Denis Negulescu, who is only 17, so it was a worthwhile exercise.

What system or style are you looking to play? How much do you have to adapt to the players you have available?

We started with a 4-3-3 against Chagos after a few withdrawals on the day but changed it after going in 3-1 down at half-time and then tweaked the formation to a 4-4-2 to accommodate the players we had at our disposal. We want to play good football but also be able to mix it when required. We have some talented wide players and it’s about trying to work out the best way for us to play to give us the best chance of winning matches.

What did you tell the players before kick-off against the Chagos Islands?

The importance of representing Surrey was drilled home to them and also the team ethic we are looking to build here – no egos, no individuals, no problems, just a united squad. We drilled home to them how vital it is to try to play good football when possible. But also how, when they come to us, it should be fun and we should be able to enjoy the time we spend together and the matches.

What were you expecting to see?

We knew the early stages would be disjointed because of the nature of it being our first match together and the fact we were relying on so many players getting to know each other in a short space of time. Only four had played for Surrey before and there were 12 debutants. With Sunday leagues and cups ongoing, it could well be that there are more debuts to come over the next two weeks.

We conceded the first goal but managed to equalise…

It was really good to see the character to battle back into the game twice. You could see by the reactions to both the goals that the players really believed, despite the challenges, we could go on and win the game, so to lose it in the end was disappointing.

What did you make of the performance?

The first half was a learning process. We learned some good things, some not so good. We found some new partnerships and saw players in different positions. The second half was much, much better, much more how we see a Surrey team playing. What we need to do is create more chances and get more efforts on target and test the goalkeeper, based on that. Chagos were very dogged and did not give us an inch so we have to learn how to play against teams like that.

Any things you’re looking to work on?

All areas in some capacity, although we are limited on the time we have together. We want to find several ways to play so that we have a plan A, B and C if necessary. Also on how best to break down stubborn teams like Chagos.

You face Chagos again this weekend…

We expect the personnel, whoever plays, to not allow our standard to drop for one moment. We can’t afford lapses of concentration, we can’t dip below the bar we set ourselves in the second half on Sunday. It’s all about building on that now, being solid at the back and scoring more goals ourselves.

Photo credit: Nathanael Osborne

View from the Dugout: Stephen Satterly

International Surrey Women’s Football coach Stephen Satterly oversaw an 8-1 win over Surrey University in our first-ever game in late April.

Here – in his own words – he lifts the lid on the build-up to the game and looks at the result in more detail…

“We have a great group of coaches and are all very experienced. What we were looking for in the initial sessions was ability and quality of player and problem solvers – everything else comes from the coaches. The sessions were designed to show technical ability and feel for the ball. Systems and style will vary during games – we will play as adaptable units and we will be able to change the way we set up and play. But will always be aggressive going forward. We have to adapt our style of play to player availability, but we will endeavour to play the same way – aggressive forward play with clever quality players.

“Ahead of the first game, we gave the ladies individual and unit tasks for the game, plus specific information regarding times when we were in and out of possession. That changed as the game progressed. As it was our first fixture, with a new squad, I didn’t expect too much, but – wow – what a good surprise!

“I was a little concerned when we conceded the first goal, as the team were still finding their feet and understanding their roles, but the reaction and work ethic after that was excellent and the confidence grew minute by minute. The determination and effort from the group was incredibly impressive.

“Gemma [Luke] got a first game hat-trick – a fantastic start. Gemma has very good ability and strikes the ball so well, so I’m delighted for her.

“Stan [Emily Stanley] is great with everyone. She wants to do well at everything, but the big thing Stan brings is determination. She sets the bar very high and everyone in the squad is expected to reach that bar.

“It was our first fixture, so obviously there are things that need attention on and off the pitch. As we progress, the squad will have more information on what we want to achieve on the pitch and how we plan to do that. It’s a great start and we can only improve tactically and technically as we approach further fixtures. It’s all very positive.”

Photo: Sheena Booker

2021 WUFA World Series: Surrey – Participating Teams

We’re pleased to announce the 4 teams that will be participating in the 2021 WUFA World Series in Surrey, in association with Merrist Wood College, where all 4 games will be played on 16th and 23rd May, the first tournament to be played since the formation of the World Unity Football Alliance last summer. All 4 teams were chosen due to their proximity to Surrey in order to limit travel in line with UK COVID-19 restrictions that will still be in place when the tournament is due to take place. The fixtures for the tournament will be unveiled tomorrow.

Barawa

Co-founding member of WUFA. Barawa represents the Somali diaspora in England. It is named after Barawa, a port town in Somalia. Barawa Football Association was developed in 2015. Using football as a tool, the aim is to expose the Barawanese culture around the world and actively redevelop football in the south region of Somalia. Barawa uses the power of football to create change. 

Chagos Islands

Co-founding member of WUFA. Representing the Chagossian community that has been in exile since it was forcibly evicted from its Indian Ocean homeland in 1966. The British government sold the Chagossian home, the island of Diego Garcia, to the U.S. for a new military air base. Thousands of miles away from its ancestral home, the Chagossian community continues to fight to be allowed to return to its islands, proudly maintaining its unique identity in Crawley Manchester and all around the world, through language, song, culture, and, of course football, to let people know about the Chagossian history.

Surrey

Co-founding member of WUFA, and tournament host. Representing the County of Surrey in Southern England, debuted a men’s team in 2018 and debuting a women’s team later this month. Surrey’s history with football stretches back to the very early days that the game became organised in England.

Maghreb

Non-WUFA member. Maghreb are an exception as they are not currently a member of WUFA, but participation in the tournament was agreed by WUFA given the current travel restrictions and advisory information currently in place in the UK and the likelihood that hotel accommodation within Surrey may still be unavailable limiting the opportunity to non-locally based teams from participating. Maghreb represents the Moroccan diaspora based in London and was founded in 2019.

WUFA World Series Coming to Surrey

International Surrey Football is pleased to announce that Surrey will host a stage of the WUFA World Series, an international competition organised under the World Unity Football Alliance banner, the first decentralised tournament by the alliance. The multi-stage tournament allows WUFA members host a series of localised tournaments to support greater team participation while helping to reduce costs, especially travel. The 4-team Surrey Stage of the tournament will be the first tournament being organised by WUFA members.

The WUFA World Series name is to reflect the tournament’s truly global reach, not limiting non-FIFA events to a single large scale annual event, and instead support a number of localised tournament’s taking place across the world, while the “Surrey Stage” of the tournament is the first to be announced, it’s not the only one being planned amidst the global backdrop in 2021, but this localisation approach by WUFA aids members in avoiding many of the travel and financial limitations typical of a non-FIFA tournament, made only more restrictive in the midst of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. While the ability for teams to take part in tournaments is restricted currently, it’s hoped that future World Series tournaments will improve overall access, not only to individual teams, but also supporters with the event being more viable in certain countries and regions such as North America where few non-FIFA games and tournaments have been able to be held in the past.

The format of the Surrey stage of the new non-FIFA tournament will be reminiscent of followers of the Southern Frontier Cup and will consist of a 4 team in a knockout format, teams were drawn randomly to determine semi-final matches with games played back to back, the winners of each fixture will progress to the final, while the losers of each fixture will progress to the third-place playoff, final and third-place playoff games would be played the following day. Different stages of the WUFA World Series may choose to adopt different formats for their respective stages.

The tournament will be held behind closed doors with no spectators by International Surrey Football at Merrist Wood College, near Guildford. The teams participating in the tournament will be announced tomorrow and the Semi-Final Matchups, already drawn will be announced on Thursday ahead of the men’s team’s first training session since their last game held on 22nd December 2019. Games will be held on 16th & 23rd May 2021.

Sponsorship options for the tournament are available with match sponsorship and a digital programme advert among the options available. Interested sponsors can contact Michelle Saunders on 07786 565555, or email info@intsurreyfootball.co.uk

Continue Where You Left Off: Surrey to Host Chagos Islands in First-Ever WUFA Game

International Surrey Football is pleased to announce that we’ll be playing the Chagos Islands for the third time in our first game in over a year, as Surrey prepares to resume playing after the lengthy delays caused by COVID-19. As well as marking Surrey’s return to play, the game will be holding significant prominence as the first game to be played under the WUFA banner since the alliance was founded in the summer of 2020.

International Surrey Football and the Chagos Islands Football Association are both founding member of the World Unity Football Alliance and will be the first teams to play under the organisation’s banner in the upcoming friendly game. The World Unity Football Alliance is a collaborative effort between value-aligned teams with a mission to promote hope, opportunity, and universal human rights while celebrating the joy of bringing people together through the most beautiful of games: Football.

The game will be played behind closed doors at Merrist Wood College on May 9th following a series of weekly training sessions by the Surrey men’s team, partially held at the further education college. The game, sponsored by Martin Auvrey, will be the 3rd meeting between the two teams, with both of the previous meetings being held in 2019.

28 April 2019, Surrey 2 – 3 Chagos Islands
22 December 2019, Chagos Islands 1 – 4 Surrey

The game will mark the first occasion new Surrey manager Matt Nash has managed the team, while it will be the 2nd occasion in which Chagos Islands FA manager Jimmy Ferrar will have faced Surrey. Video coverage of the game will be provided by Surrey’s in-house broadcaster WatchISF with more details to be announced closer to the game, we look forward to welcoming the Chagos Islands to Surrey once again.

A digital match programme will be available, or you will be able to pre-order a physical copy, these will be available to order from the ISF Store, more details will be announced at a later date.

More details around the game including a match programme, video highlights, and more will be announced at a later date ahead of the game. Interested sponsors can contact Michelle Saunders at 07786 565555 or email info@intsurreyfootball.co.uk