The Jewish Chronicle - - Sport -

MAC­CABI GB, have named the ju­nior foot­ball squads that will be trav­el­ling to Is­rael next year as part of Team GB for the 18th Mac­cabiah Games Chai.

The Un­der 16 man­age­ment team of Neil Collins, Joel Nathan and Johnny Davis whit­tled down al­most 100 ap­pli­cants na­tion­wide into a squad of 17 play­ers.

Collins said: “The 2009 squad has been cho­sen based on bal­ance and flex­i­bil­ity. The group has been se­lected for its all-round team play and is not cen­tred on any spe­cific in­di­vid­u­als or clubs. It fea­tures play­ers from many dif­fer­ent back­grounds and in­cludes youngsters from Glasgow Celtic and Charl­ton Ath­letic.

“The suc­cess of the squad will be de­ter­mined by var­i­ous fac­tors, namely the pre-Games friendlies and train­ing ses­sions, the bond­ing that is de­rived from th­ese games, planned week­ends away and prob­a­bly, above all else, the abil­ity of the squad to cope with the ex­treme tem­per­a­ture con­di­tions they will face in Is­rael mid July.

“Mac­cabi GB have pro­duced an ex­ten­sive pro­gramme for all man­agers and coaches to en­sure that each and ev­ery boy has the same op­por­tu­nity as the next per­son.

“The man­age­ment struc­ture of my­self, Joel Nathan, Johnny Davis and Brian Green is ex­pe­ri­enced and has the knowl­edge of the boys cho­sen to de­liver.... we be­lieve we will.”

Andy Zeller and Aron Barnes, who rep­re­sent the man­age­ment team for the Un­der 18 foot­ball squad, will leave noth­ing to chance in their quest for gold. They hope to im­prove on their cred­itable sil­ver won at last year’s Euro­pean Mac­cabi Games in Rome.

The squad in­cludes Gregg Sulkin, the teenage ac­tor and star of the film ‘66’, and Jake Fur­man, the younger brother of Glasgow Rangers foot­baller Dean Fur­man, cur­rently on l oan at Brad­ford City.

Barnes said: “We have for­mu­lated a strong squad and are putting in place an in­tense train­ing sched­ule that en­sures the squad is fully pre­pared. It is a very ex­cit­ing time for th­ese young ath­letes and one that they should all be able to look back on in years to come as a life­time high­light of theirs - both on and off the pitch.”

Andy Zeller

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