A new collaboration between Liverpool County FA and the Frank Soo Foundation aims to unearth and showcase East and South East Asian talent across Liverpool in honour of Frank Soo, the first player of Asian descent to play for England (unofficial war time caps), who grew up in Liverpool and still has many family ties in the city.
As part of this collaboration, the Frank Soo Cup 2023 took place – the first time a County FA has held an event specifically for the ESEA community.
Six teams entered the 9-a-side tournament, with teams mainly from the North West of England comprised of players from different ESEA backgrounds; Chinese, Hong Kong, Vietnamese, Korean, Japanese to name a few.
The tournament was won by SNLA Birmingham, a Midlands-based Vietnamese team. Their player/manager Giang Van Le said: "My team really enjoyed it today and it means a lot to make this connection with the FA. We will definitely look into some of the support they are offering."
Event organiser Maxwell Min added: "It’s a big opportunity not only for Liverpool FA and the Foundation, but also for so many ESEA participants who seek good prospects in football to share networks and knowledge."
Stuart Carrington, Football Development Officer (Inclusion) at Liverpool County FA, said: “It has been a fantastic experience to host and welcome the Frank Soo Foundation Tournament to Liverpool. The teams all played in the correct spirit of the game , and we look forward to working together again in the near future."
The event was attended by some of the Soo Family members, including Great Grand Niece, Jacque Soo, honorary President of the Foundation, who said: "The family members were very impressed with the quality of the football and at the attendance from all the players. We are proud to support the Frank Soo Cup and continue to be proud of his legacy."
For more details about the Frank Soo Foundation, head to thefranksoofoundation.org.uk