The Gloucestershire FA Boy’s and Women’s Representative Teams put on hold for the foreseeable future.
Gloucestershire FA would like to express its gratitude and thank all those involved with the Representative Teams.
Board Director, Sue Henson-Green who has played a pivotal role with the Representative Teams for many years, announced: "Due to the impact of COVID-19, it has been decided to put County Representative football on hold for the foreseeable time. Thank you to all who have been involved over the many years. There are too many to name individually; Players, Clubs, Coaches, Managers, Physios, Parents/Carers, Match Officials, GFA admin staff and Volunteers.”
As former Under 18 Manager, Calum Wands has a long history with the County football teams. He represented and captained the Under 18's, and additionally was the Assistant Manager for the Under 16, Under 18 & Women's teams.
“Playing, captaining, and coaching the Representative Teams has been a great opportunity I wouldn't have got elsewhere. I want to say a massive thank you to everyone involved; every single coach I have worked with, the staff at the GFA for their help, the players, and their parents.
I know the players have loved and enjoyed representing the County. The training sessions, the coach journeys away [to face other Counties] and our run in The FA County Youth Cup. I have enjoyed and loved my six years with the County. The experience has been invaluable.”
The suspension of football cancelled the remaining fixtures for the Representative Teams along with the annual summer Grassroots Football Awards evening. The awards evening would have seen the presentation of the Simon Ford Memorial Trophy, awarded to the best Under 18 player. Despite the shortened campaign, Sue and Calum were determined to award the Trophy this year.
The award went to Under 18 goalkeeper and captain, Joe Wright. Joe has shown excellent levels of commitment, dedication, and leadership. A member of England's Under 18 softball team, Joe had the following to say after receiving the accolade. “I’m pleased to get the award. It was a shame the season ended early. Although the results didn’t go our way we were playing well. I want to say thank you to Calum, Bertrand, Clarkey and the rest of the boys.”
Calum was similarly full of praise for Joe following his award. “Between the coaches, it was an easy decision to make. Joe’s commitment over the years has been amazing. He’s a very good keeper, who has performed well and the communication from him and his parents make it easy to work with him. A testament to Joe’s commitment, during one of our first games he arrived from Israel and drove from Gatwick to the game. He fully deserves the award.”
Joe, a member of the Rep Team for the past three seasons added: “It’s a privilege to represent the County and I have thoroughly enjoyed my time. It’s the next level of football and a good stepping-stone into men’s football for Under 18 players.”
Sue continued: "Congratulations to Joe on being the recipient of the Simon Ford Memorial Trophy for the 2019/20 season. Joe has been a credit to the County, his family and his club. He deserves this award."
On the future of the Representative Teams, she had this to say: “Throughout the years each player has represented the County very professionally and it has been such an honour to be involved with everyone. I do hope that Counties will again play representative football once these unprecedented times become stable."