Belfast Telegraph

Super Cup NI draw: Club NI to face Manchester United and Rangers

By Robert Jones

The draw for the Junior and Premier section of the 2018 Super Cup NI was held last night at Belfast International Airport.

This year’s competition will see teams from 15 nations from across the globe represented.

In total 40 teams will compete in the Under-15 (Junior) and Under-17 (Premier) section at the tournament, which is scheduled to get under way at the end of July.

Crowd pullers Manchester United were the first name out of the hat and the Old Trafford youngsters have been placed in a tough group with Rangers, 2017 semi-finalists Club NI and County Londonderry.

There’s an all-county affair in Group C as County Fermanagh take on County Antrim, with Plymouth Argyle and Chivas Guadalajara from Mexico completing their group.

In the Premier section defending champions Right to Dream from Ghana will face the team they defeated in the final last July.

They will take on Club America from Mexico and their group is completed by Scottish side Partick Thistle and County Tyrone.

Group E will see Russian outfit Spartak Moscow take on Brazilian side Osasco, County Antrim and County Fermanagh.

Tournament chairman Victor Leonard said the 2017 competition will live long in the memory, but he has high hopes of the 2018 competition exceeding those lofty heights.

“Our gate receipts at the 2017 competition were up by 20% and last year weather wise and football wise we witnessed one of the best competitions in years,” he said. “We have been on an incredible journey and over the last 36 years we have witnessed quite a few changes.

“Everyone is really looking forward to a tremendous week of football.”

This year’s competition will see five different categories competed for, including a Challenge Match at Under-19 level.

The Under-17 Premier section, the Under-15 Junior section, the Under-13 Minor section and a girls’ competition are all up for grabs, with the Challenge game being contested by Manchester United and Celtic on Saturday, July 21 at the Coleraine Showgrounds.

JUNIOR DRAW

Group A: Manchester United, Rangers FC, Club NI, Co Londonderry

Group B: Charlton Athletic, Global Premier Soccer, Cherry Orchard, Co Down

Group C: Plymouth Argyle, Chivas Guadalajara, Co Antrim, Co Fermanagh

Group D:  Leeds United, Colina (Chile), Dundalk Schoolboys League, Co Armagh

Group E: Southampton, Strikers (America), North Dublin Schoolboys League, Co Tyrone

PREMIER DRAW

GROUP A: Vendee, Global Premier Soccer, Edmonton FC, Co Londonderry

Group B: Partick Thistle, Club America, Right to Dream, Co Tyrone

Group C: Newcastle United, Iquique (Chile), Ichifuna, Co Down

Group D: Serie B, First Choice Soccer, Otago, Co Armagh

Group E: Spartak Moscow, Osasco, Co Antrim, Co Fermanagh

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