Content on this page requires a newer version of Adobe Flash Player.

Get Adobe Flash player

Youtube ButtonFacebook ButtonTwitter Button

SARI Soccerfest First for World United 

The week end of the 13th & 14th September saw a World Utd squad head south to Dublin to participate in “Soccerfest” organised by SARI (Sport against Racism Ireland).  The event is a showpiece in the SARI calendar and serves to promote their ethos of the promotion of positive cultural integration and social inclusion through sport.  The main competition involved 48 teams with all bar World Utd having their base in the Rep of Ireland.  In the first stage of the competition teams were divided into twelve groups of four with the top two teams from each proceeding through to the cup contest.

World Utd began their campaign against a skilful Slovakian team who started with a neat passing game football on a heavy pitch.  While taking time to adapt to the conditions the defensive line up of Boden, Sowoboda and Mockey was resolute and confined the opposition to long range shots which proved ineffective.  After a scoreless first period the midfield of Djalo & Kamanga started to dictate more of the play and exert pressure on the oppositions goal.  Midway through the half a penetrating kick in from Djalo created panic in the Slovakian box and a slight touch from Sowoboda saw the ball nestle in the net.  The addition of Vellem and Kouassi served to consolidate the pattern of play and although both sides had further chances the final whistle went to give World Utd a victory and avenge the defeat of Nigel’s Boys the previous week end.

Next up was a plucky Dublin team who caused a few problems before eventually going down to a 3-2 score line.  Whilst for the most part it was a comfortable contest World Utd almost paid a price for some sloppy defending.  The goals came in the form of a rocket from Kamanga, a cleverly placed flick from Sowoboda and a low drive from the boot of Djalo.   

With two wins in the bag a draw was need in the final group game to secure top place. Against a robust Nigerian side called the Eagles the team finally clicked into top gear and completely dominated there opponents in all departments. With the starting back line of Mockey, Sowoboda & Boden were completely focused on tracking attackers the midfield of Djalo & Kamanga looked masterful going forward.  As the first period drew to a close Moffett cut in from the right wing and powered a low cross field drive into the far corner of the net.  After the interval Vellem & Kouassi came on and work hard for the team containing the opposition and providing support to the front players. With the Eagle’s players well chaperoned and posing no real threat it was a case of Deja vu when Moffett again cut in from the right leaving defenders in his wake and unleashing an unstoppable shot which nearly uprooted the nets.  The final 2-0 score line by no means flattered a World Utd side who had grown in confidence as the day progressed.

The second phase of the tournament on Sunday saw World Utd grouped with a team named English in Dublin who consisted of players originating from Brazil.  The third team Clondalkin Towers was made up from players from Iran.

In the first match World Utd lined up against what turned out to be a classy Brazilian side everyone of whom were very comfortable on the ball.  In adopting a defensive stance World Utd had to endure sustained periods of pressure.  However through hard work and concentration from all the busy Brazilian’s were unable to break through a determined defence.  In a tight encounter chances for both teams were limited with long range shooting the order of the day.  While the Boys form Brazil pressed hard World Utd employed the tactic of hit back on the break with the pace of Moffett gave defenders a lot to think about. As the final whistle sounded the 0-0 score line was welcomed by several World Utd team members who had played through the pain barrier as a result of injuries sustained previously.

With a place in the quarter final in the balance a toss of a coin was necessary to decide who should take on the Clondalkin team.  After winning the toss captain Djalo decided to wait and let the Brazilian’s take on the field first.  After a plucky start by Clondalkin the Brazilian’s gradually rolled over them and running out 6-1 winners.

As a result World Utd took on Clondalkin needing to win by 6 clear goals in order to progress in the competition.  Right form the outset World Utd took the game to there opponents and soon chances began to arrive. However a combination of bad luck and weary legs were taking there toll and confidence began to drain away.  Hitting on the counter the Clondalkin side pressed forward and where rewarded with a penalty when Mockey accidentally handled in the box.  The resultant kick was well saved by Hall. However midway through the half disaster struck when a speculative from a Clondalkin attacker beat the unsighted Hall.  As the second half progressed the sustained World Utd pressure paid off when Djalo leveled the score with a low drive through the legs of a defended and passed the keeper.  As the pressure intensified the Clondalkin goal seemed to be leading a charmed life as chance after chance went begging.  Meanwhile at the other end the rear guard, reduced to Mockey & Vellem stood firm to contain the limited threat from the opposition.  With time running out Moffett cracked in a second to lift moral albeit temporally as the final whistle went soon after and World Utd exited the tournament on goal difference. 

After the games all agreed that we had given a fabulous Brazilian team a close race however their free running style and elegant passing game was worthy of there place in the quarter finals.  These thoughts turned out to be absolutely prophetic as the brilliant Brazilian’s when on to win the competition.

Having gone through both group phases undefeated and competed admirably with the eventual winners the World Utd team can quite rightly feel very proud with what they achieved.  Also through participation in Soccerfest we have demonstrated our own ethos of celebrating diversity using football.  We have spread the good feeling that exists within the team and gained a lot of respect from other teams in the completion.