St George’s signs partnership agreement with ASD Olimpus

Exciting collaboration with local football club officially agreed

A partnership between local football club ASD Olimpus and St George’s has been officially agreed. In the first instance, this will allow both a boys and girls team team made up of Key Stage 3 pupils (U14) to play competitively under the banner of ASD Olimpus, but as the St George’s squad. Over time, we anticipate that the relationship will grow and will result in all of our teams in the Senior School training more regularly and playing matches most weekends throughout the Football season.

Both the boys and girls squads will play in a hybrid kit, incorporating elements from both the club and school and will feature the logos of both parties. Training will take place on the school pitches immediately after school with qualified English-speaking coaches, with matches being played either at school or at one of the two Olimpus bases close to school: Campo Gentili, La Giustiniana and Olgiata Sports Centre. 

“We hope that this will reduce pressure on parents who currently have to coordinate the Roman traffic two or three times per week to get their children to training on time.”  

The partnership is the culmination of a long process which began in 2019 with the launch of our CCA and Sport Strategy, which identified that more opportunities for regular, meaningful competition were needed. The success of the COBIS Games; the large cohorts in the current U14 squads and the number of applicants to come to competitions such as The Mediterranean Cup in Verona meant that this was the obvious cohort to begin with and will give the players the opportunity to have regular competition and regular fixtures.

Mr Douglas goes on to explain the reason behind the partnership: “We had several conversations with clubs but ASD Olimpus were on the same page as us from the start. They are keen to link with a large organisation and keen to begin a female only programme. With so many female players in the St George’s teams and a furiously committed group of U14 boys, it was clear that we were a perfect match. We have the same inclusive concepts which focus on long term athlete development and have clear pathways for all of our pupils.”  

This collaboration will replace the traditional Football programme at U14 level for both boys and girls with both midweek squad training sessions and the Monday night Football Academy being incorporated into this programme. Whilst there will still be scope to enter some RISA fixtures and competitions such as the Mediterranean Cup, the focus will be on the development of the squads and regular fixtures.

Football Academy

For pupils in the Junior School, we will expand the Football Academy to two sessions per week, one at CCS every Monday, one at La Storta every Wednesday and a whole squad training session, to be held at the La Storta Campus on a Saturday morning. This squad will play in the revamped RISA competition throughout the 2023-24 season.

ISSA Sports Competitions

Following more collaborative work between Mr Douglas and Tristan Cook, Head of Enrichment at The British School of Brussels (BSB), a new International Schools Tournament will begin in the new School year. This will include regular competitions in Football, Basketball and Netball, as well as further stand alone competitions in Golf and Skiing. We are very excited to begin the Football programme by hosting both the U18 and U14 competitions here in Rome throughout the Autumn term. 

RISA League

In addition to the ISSA Competition, a RISA (Rome International Schools Association)  League has been established in Football and Basketball, allowing for more meaningful fixtures against our local rivals. These matches will happen throughout the season, beginning in September.

“All of this means that we now have a healthy recreational programme for recreational Football in our Junior Schools and competitive programmes, primarily in Football but also in Basketball in the Senior School,” said Mr Douglas. “For the families who want the option of playing for a club, which will be helpful for both our existing players, who had limited exit routes in Football, but especially for our new families who no longer have to navigate not only moving to a new country, joining a new club but also having to do this in a new language, we really hope to have a package for all here. If we include the addition of both the new ISSA Competition and the advent of the RISA League, this is certainly an exciting time for our students.”