JERSEY boss Martin Cassidy is keen to maintain the momentum built by the Island’s age-group footballers this season, as his team bids to capture the first contested Muratti Vase since 2019.
The Channel Islands’ top two sides will meet at Springfield on Saturday afternoon [2pm kick-off] and Jersey’s senior men have an opportunity to build on a 100% record, following inter-insular victories at U16, U18 and U21 level.
Cassidy’s side claimed back-to-back Muratti titles in 2018 and 2019, taking win tallies over the past ten fixtures – including eight since the formation of Guernsey FC – to five apiece.
The 2022 edition will be the first since Jersey Bulls’ UK-league debut and the hosts should be buoyed by the experience gleaned from appearances in the Combined Counties League.
Fifteen of the 16 players chosen by Cassidy are signed with the Caesarean club, who ply their trade one tier below GFC.
‘No doubt it is going to be a challenge again,’ said Cassidy.
‘I follow the Guernsey progress a lot and many players have been competing at a very high level, so we know that we will have to be on our game to get a result.
‘Our lads are all really up for putting on a show out there and ending the season on a high.
‘Looking at the success of the younger age groups; it is a testament to the football system over here. There are a ton of great youngsters coming through and, even for my squad, there were six or seven at university who would have had a great shout of being a part of this fixture.’
The absence of left-back Jay Giles through injury has created room for veteran Jack Cannon, who still has his sights on becoming Jersey’s most capped Muratti player of all time. The 35-year-old made his Jersey Bulls debut late in the 2021/22 campaign and his recent form has made him a strong contender for a place in the starting XI. Any involvement tomorrow would earn him his 22nd Muratti cap – one short of Alan ‘Nash’ Venton, who played 23 times for Jersey between 1957-1973.
Joining Giles on the sidelines is Sol Solomon, who is ineligible as an unforeseen consequence of a contract agreement with the Bulls.
Jersey FA: Euan Van Der Vliet, Pierce Roche, Harry Curtis, James Quérée (c), Luke Campbell, Sam Sutcliffe, Jack Cannon, Calvin Weir, Kamen Nafkha, Jonny Le Quesne, Ruben Mendes, Adam Trotter, Fraser Barlow, Jake Prince, Lorne Bickley.
Guernsey FA [16 from]: Jason Martin, Josh Addison, Nick Batiste, Keanu Marsh, Jacob Fallaize, Jamie Dodd (c), River Marsh, Jake Lowe, Joe Alvarez, Kez Mahon, Tom Jackson, Dave Rihoy, Ben Acey, Charlton Gauvain, Dom Heaume, Ross Allen, Danny Hale, Will Fazakerley, Sam Murray, Keene Domaille.