OCS has been providing a total facilities management service at St. George’s Park (SGP), the FA’s National Football Centre in Burton-on-Trent, since 2012. Naturally, then, challenging the in-house team to an 11-a-side match on the highly acclaimed full size 3G astroturf indoor pitch has been on OCS’s to-do list for some time.
The friendly took place in late October, with the OCS team made up of directors, managers and even players from other OCS clients. The St George’s team, led by Head Groundsman at SGP Alan Ferguson, included staff from across the site from FA Learning, Football Development, Hilton Hotel, League Managers Association and Perform Healthcare.
“While OCS lost 7 - 1 against a well-organised SGP team, it was a well-contested match played in a great spirit with plenty of skills on show,” said Jane Sheard, UK Managing Director of Facilities Services at OCS.
“This was a great opportunity for OCS to continue to forge our close links with the FA and St. George’s Park and will undoubtedly become a regular event in our calendars,” Sheard added.
After the match, OCS – which delivers catering, M&E, front-of-house, security and cleaning services to the centre – treated both teams to a freshly cooked curry with all the trimmings and a few cold drinks to ease the players’ aches and pains.
St. George’s Park, which opened on 2 July 2012, is the base for all coaching and development work by the FA and includes 12 world-class outdoor pitches as well as a full-sized indoor pitch. State-of-the-art hydrotherapy suites, biomechanic training gyms, video analysis amenities, coaching suites and sports science facilities are also key elements of the facility.