Boca boys book in for new-look Tournament

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The Argentinian giants today confirmed they will be coming to Jersey in August to compete against Manchester United, Glasgow Celtic and Benfica.It will cost £18,000 to transport the squad from Argentina to London.Reigning champions Sunderland will not be defending the trophy while they regroup following their relegation from the Premiership last season, while former winners Barcelona and Blackburn Rovers are also not able to travel.The competition sees a change in format this year – whereas in previous years the tournament featured six teams split into two groups with a final between the top two teams, this time round it will be on a simple league basis.For the clubs this means they will be guaranteed more games – three as opposed to, for those not reaching the final, only two – and they will also play against all the opposition.As tournament organiser Iain Mackenzie of Sporting Eventualities explained: ‘There are a lot of reasons behind going to four teams.

Every year clubs say what they think can be improved and one of those has been to play more games.’Going back to the days when we dropped the Island side out – teams who didn’t get to final felt that effectively they played only one game.’Our tournament is the last thing before the season starts and so the clubs are up to speed and happy to play more games.’It seems ludicrous to have six top sides in the Island and we can’t see which games we’d like to – for example the Celtic fans couldn’t see Celtic v Barcelona because they were in different groups.’We’ve had to reduce the tournament to four as six teams each playing one another once would be impossible in a week with one stadium to play in.’We’ve talked about Guernsey in the past but with the Island Games there this year it just wasn’t possible.

But it’s still something we’re looking at for next year.’If we get four teams in and they all play each other it guarantees all of the teams three games.

Teams that don’t reach the final only get two games.’There has to be a winner in every match if it’s a draw after normal time it will go to penalties.

Whoever tops the league will be the winner.’Boca have a slightly different age system than us – after the U19s they have a 19-20 years age group, then the reserves.’They’ve been travelling round Europe and won three of the four tournaments they’ve played in, finishing runners-up in the other one.’They would be bringing their reserve team over with a few players from the 19-20 age group who are coming though.’Boca played Manchester United in this age group a few years back at Carrington and won 3-1 while the Argentina U21s beat England U21s 8-0 recently.’

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