With Presentation Night upcoming this weekend, finalists for some of our key awards can be revealed from club member nominations. First of which is the Ian Johnstone Trophy.
Ian Johnstone played Sunday football for Melbourne University Soccer Club in the 1990’s. He died racing a Porsche in the Targa 500 in Tasmania in 1995 and his ashes were scattered on pitch 4 at Princes Park before a game. A bearded and burly defender, Ian was a Manchester United fan who enjoyed the ‘cultural’ side of Sunday pub football. This trophy is awarded in his name each year to a MUSC member who pitches in around the club, enjoys their amateur footy and encourages their club mates to do the same. The 2018 Finalists are Hayden Smith, Matt Ross, Nathanial Harris and Eduardo Daga De Sousa.
Hayden has been the team manager for the Division 1 Reserves for the last few seasons and there hasnt been a task he has said no to. Hayden helps out by submitting match results, but by no means does his contribution end there; providing extremely detailed, entertaining and light-hearted match reports each week for his team mates. Hayden was key in keeping up to date records of player availability, announcements and changes to training schedules. Whenever the club asked he made sure he was available to come down to Northern Pavilion early and contributed as a presentation night and match day group representative.
Matt joined the club this year, and where many take time to find their feet, Matt hasn’t taken a backwards step. Whenever a team needed a player he was one of the first to lace up, and would often do the double State & Metro in the same weekend ( or even triple with Metro 1 & 4 games in the same day) to ensure no squad would have to play short when others went on vacations. When Coach Sam was away from the Metro 1’s Matt filled in as a coach /team manager / team administrator Matt was always visible down at Northern Pavilion, first person to stick around for a drink after his match, and simultaneously go and help sweep a change room or offer to man the bar. Just because the season has ended doesn’t mean it has for Matt – he has put his hand up to help coordinate the Bar for presentation night (completing his RSA in the process) and has been seen helping pack up Samba goals after his Summer Sevens matches.
After already committing to Player-coach the Vicsoccer Premier League squad, Nathaniel received an injured before the halfway mark. Nat had 100 reasons not to continue committing time to the club, being President of the Cancer Society, a Final exam year as Med Student, musical interests, family in Sydney, a trip to Russia for the World Cup and other interests, however he was a huge part of Sunday football and came down several times on Friday night. Nat had great character too – he would hobble on the pitch and do an assessment of any injured player (MUSC or opposition) and helped prevent serious injuries (or got those seriously injured to a hospital). When both Senior and Reserve squads found themselves coachless for a significant part of the season, Nat stepped in to assist both squads (who sometimes played at different locations) to ensure all team members got a chance to play and enjoy the year
Eduardo Daga De Sousa
Edu turned 40 this year but it hasn’t slowed his enthusiasm for the game or our club. A key leader and volunteer from the Men’s State League 5 squad, Edu (after encouraging his teammates to stick around for a beer) regularly sweeps out the change rooms & locks up after training. He organises Brazilian BBQs for club events at the drop of a hat, ferries younger players to and from games, and volunteers his time and moving truck to the club which is a huge help when it comes to bumping equipment in and out of our clubrooms each year. On the field, he was vice captain for the Men’s State League 5 Reserves this year and had a great season, taking out the Reserves MVP award and finishing runner-up in the team’s Golden Boot.
The Winner will be announced at Presentation Night this Saturday