Auckland Football enter Series 1 of the ASB National Futsal League on Friday on their home court as they seek to claim top honours in the competition for the second time in three seasons.
The Auckland side, led by Futsal Whites captain Marvin Eakins, were champions of the competition in 2011-2012 before falling at the semi-final stage of the 2012-2013 event eventually won by Northern Futsal.
Eakins is joined in the Auckland side by international representative team mates Dylan Manickum, the 2011-2012 league MVP and Golden Boot, goalkeeper Elias Billeh and utility Stephen Ashby-Peckham. Futsal White Miro Major will miss this weekend’s action through injury.
Meanwhile, Auckland squad for 2013-2014 also includes a number of players from the Lotto NRFL winter football competition with Manurewa AFC represented by first team squad players Eakins, Ashby-Peckham, Clayton Chappell and Gerome Powell.
Dylan Manickum’s cousins from Ellerslie AFC, Callan and Myron, are included as is Onehunga Sports’ Michael Freeman while Papatoetoe AFC’s Daniel Billot is among the 25-man wider squad but missed selection to Series 1 through injury.
Teenager Lachlan Woods-Davidson, a member of the Auckland Football Federation Talent Centre, is also included in the wider squad.
Eakins says after Auckland’s emphatic unbeaten season in 2011-2012, the league has tightened up and a close tussle is expected.
“Auckland set the benchmark in 2012 and every federation has lifted the quality of the game since then. Any team can now win on its day,” Eakins said.
The action begins on Friday at 1.30pm as Mainland Futsal take on Central Futsal (Manawatu) while Auckland’s first game is against Mainland at 4.30pm. Entry is FREE for all three days of the competition.
Click here for the full Series 1 draw (PDF).
Auckland Football ASB National Futsal League wider squad 2013 (Series 1 players in bold):
Seth Armstrong, Stephen Ashby-Peckham, Elias Billeh (GK), Daniel Billot, Clayton Chappell (GK), Marvin Eakins (capt), Adam Fadly, Michael Freeman, Andrew Gwilliam, James Hart, Matthew Lieshout, Miroslav Major, Callan Manickum, Dylan Manickum, Myron Manickum, Done Matthews, James McCarthy (GK),Gerome Powell, Nathan Robertson (player/coach), Adam Scott, Matthew Thomas, Art Twigg, Sam Twigg, Callum Waters, Lachlan Woods-Davidson
Coach: Nathan Robertson
ASB National Futsal League Series 1 ASB Stadium, Kohimarama
Friday 4 October AFF Futsal v Mainland Futsal – 4.30pm AFF Futsal v Futsal South – 9pm
Saturday 5 October AFF Futsal v Central Futsal Hawke’s Bay – 1pm AFF Futsal v Northern Futsal – 7pm
Sunday 6 October AFF Futsal v Capital Futsal – 4.30pm