New Ellan Vannin coach Alan Rogers has announced his squad ahead of the forthcoming Europeada tournament.
The former Nottingham Forest and Tranmere full-back was in the island recently to conduct his first training session with the team since taking the managerial reigns early last month. The Manx International Football Alliance side will join 23 other teams at the Federal Union of European Nationalities-organised competition in South Tyrol between June 18-26.
MIFA made the move to enter Ellan Vannin in the tournament for autochthonous and national minorities after it became clear it would not be able to compete at next year’s ConIFA World Cup in Abkhazia because of security concerns.
The standout name in the squad is in the inclusion of veteran goalkeeper Christian Cellamare who enjoyed a superb season in between the sticks for Union Mills and subsequently won the Isle of Man Newspapers’ Football Writers’ Golden Glove award for the top keeper in the Premier League.
Alongside him is the sole Division Two player in the squad in Douglas Athletic’s Matthew Quirk, while the third goalkeeper is Corinthians’ rising talent Glenn Walker.
The seven-man defence features no fewer than four from Premier League champions St George’s: Alex Harrison, Jack McVey, Harry Weatherill and Ben Bradley.
Also being included are Corinthians’ Chris Cannell, Laxey’s Tom Smith and St John’s Harry Rothwell.
The latter is joined by his Mullen-e-Cloie team-mate Rhys Oates who formed one sixth of the midfield which is also dominated by Geordies. Alongside Oates and Corinthians’ Kane Ridings, the Saints quartet of Football Writers’ Young Player of the Year Joey Morling, Isle of Man FA captain Frank Jones, Conor Doyle and Sam Caine.
Calum Morrissey completes the Geordies presence in the travelling party in the five-man attack.
Joining up in the final third are Corinthians’ Sean Doyle, DHSOB’s Josh Thomas, Rushen United’s Furo Davies as well as the team’s sole player based off-island in Declan Sharkey who plays for Finn Harps in the Premier Division of the League of Ireland.
Roger’s backroom staff for the trip to includes assistant and goalkeeper coach Dave Timmins, coach Alan Keane, Director of Football David Crennell and MIFA tour manager Gary Weightman.
l Ellan Vannin will face Northern Irish semi-pro side Cliftonville in a friendly on Saturday, July 23 at the Solitude Stadium in Belfast.
Named the Celtic Challenge Cup, Cliftonville are using the game as a warm-up for their Europa League matches.