The 2022 STATSports SuperCupNI was back with a bang this summer as teams from across the world descended upon three council areas for what was the first fully operational tournament since 2019.
This year saw a record-breaking number of teams and games played across five days of action packed football in the Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council and Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council areas.
181 games of football were completed across six age groups with four male age groups at Minor, Youth, Junior and Premier and for the first time two female sections, a Girls’ U16 and Girls’ U13 tournament taking place.
The Premier section was the last to be completed on Friday night with English academy outfit Ipswich Town taking home their first title after victory over Antrim in a superb final. In the Globe final, a solitary goal in the second half saw Fermanagh defeat Tyrone, while Californian side Strikers North FC finished top of the pile in a competitive Vase section.
In the Junior section there was a heavyweight clash in the final of the main competition as Manchester United defeated Rangers in front of a bumper crowd at Ballymena Showgrounds. County Down claimed success in the Globe after a nail-biting win over MK Dons on penalties, while IDA Bermuda finished in top spot in the Junior Vase.
2022 saw the introduction of the new Youth section at U14 and tournament regulars Charlton Athletic saw off a resilient Glenavon in the showpiece final. In the Globe final Glentoran prevailed in a Belfast derby defeating Crusaders, while Bangor outfit Castle Juniors defeated Bermuda in the Vase. In the Bowl competition, Greenisland took top spot defeating Coleraine in Ahoghill.
The popular Minor section at U13 was once again well received and Surf Select from the USA took home top spot after defeating Glentoran. In the Globe final highly respected Dublin side Belvedere defeated Linfield, while there was further success for Dublin in the Vase final as Home Farm defeated Cliftonville on penalties. In the Bowl final, Dungannon United Youth defeated Ballymoney United and there was success for Coleraine FC as they defeated Stella Maris to win the Salver competition.
The Girls’ U16 and U13 sections which were sponsored by Fibrus were a huge hit and there was further success for Surf Select as they defeated Rangers at Dixon Park in Ballyclare, in a game which was streamed live thanks to BBC Northern Ireland.
In the U16 Globe final Republic of Ireland defeated Northern Ireland while Northeast Rush took honours in the Vase section. The U13 competition was closely contested with Linfield winning the main competition after defeating Crusaders in Newtownabbey.