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Coyne Airways’ Soccermen shoot for Golden Globe

[ March 14, 2014   //   ]

The story of the “world’s worst football team”, helped to its first victory by sponsorship from Coyne Airways, is set to be immortalised in a film released by its wonder coaches, Matt Conrad and Paul Watson.
The Soccermen charts film student Matt and football journalist Paul’s quest to coach Pohnpei, a state team in the Country of the Federated States of Micronesia in the Pacific Ocean, whose 16-1 defeat to neighbouring Micronesian island Guam had left them bottom of the tables.
All-cargo carrier Coyne Airways stepped in to sponsor, helping fund them on a tour, which led to a seven-one victory against Guam Premier League team Crushers in their first competitive game in decades.
“We felt compelled to help when we first heard about Pohnpei,” said Larry Coyne, CEO, Coyne Airways.
“We specialise in getting freight into some of the world’s most difficult-to-reach destinations, we understand the commitment and drive it takes to overcome serious challenges.”
Coaching novices Matt and Paul, both British nationals, tackled toad-infested facilities in one of the world’s wettest climates to turn around the fortunes of a team which had never won a competitive match.
Pohnpei’s obesity rate is 90 percent, and 30 percent of the population suffers from diabetes.
Larry Coyne said he was pleased that the success of the football team was encouraging more people on the island to take up exercise.
“In every project like this you need someone who will take a chance on you and believe in what you are doing even though there is no evidence that it will be achievable,” said Matt Conrad.
“Without Coyne Airways, not just the money they put up for the team, but their moral and logistical support, there would be no team, no story, no nothing.”
The Pohnpei team is continuing to work hard, although Matt Conrad said they still needed more funding. The ultimate goal is for them to be able to travel to international competitions, but to keep going they need money for basics such as fuel to fund players’ travel to soccer practice.
Paul Watson has taken up a new challenge, answering a call from Ulan Bator before Christmas, he is currently helping to kick-start and coach a new Mongolian team, Bayangol FC.
The Soccermen will be out later this year and you can see more about Matt and Paul’s adventure from here

 

 

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