‘PHILANTHROPIC, footballing banker – a myth or could it be true?’
Most football stories today revolve around the exorbitant weekly salaries and transfer costs in the £millions, so how refreshing is it to find a football tale that harks back to the values of team & community spirit, loyalty, appreciation and giving something back…
Philippe Wick, a young Swiss trainee banker arrived in London in 1980 to start his banking career and through an ex-President of the Alexandra Park (AP) Football Club (Jack Drake), was invited to join AP. Phil had two seasons in the first team before moving to the USA and other countries across the world, pursuing a very successful banking career. As well as setting up his own investment company in Switzerland, Phil, along with his business partners, Andrea Picciau and former French World Cup Football winner, Christian Karembeu, started the sports clothing company ‘14Fourteen‘.
Phil always kept in touch with AP and came back and played in a match to mark the club’s centenary in 1998. His fondness for the club grew from the warm welcome he received when he joined, the friends that he made and the way this traditional amateur club was run by volunteers. He also loved, “the fact we paid to play; the camaraderie and fighting spirit of the team and the hard but fair battles on the field!”
Such appreciation of the values and true love for the sport that was and continues to be fundamental to the AP Club, combined with the sense of belonging and team spirit experienced by Phil, led him to make the offer of sponsorship. “As a token of gratitude to the warm welcome I enjoyed at the club I felt like doing something in return to show my appreciation of the positive impact AP has had on my life.”
And so, through his sports clothing company 14Fourteen, Phil has supplied his old amateur league club with full new team kits for all 10 Alexandra Park football teams, plus fully branded polo shirts for all club members and 70 footballs.
Phil, former French World Cup Football winner Christian Karembeu & Andrea from 14Fourteen are coming to London on the 7th September 2013 to launch the sponsorship deal at the opening game of the season, which is also the APFC 1st team’s first game in the top division of the Southern Amateur League in 60 years – time for double celebrations!
The event at The Racecourse Ground at Alexandra Park, Wood Green, promises to display the best that amateur sports clubs have to offer. With the youth & girls football taking place from 10am, a reserve team fixture at 2pm, the 1st team’s highly anticipated first game of the season kicking off at 4.15pm, plus Alexandra Park Cricket Club 1st team’s final match of the season from mid-day. To top off what will hopefully be a cracking day of amateur sport, the Club will be hosting a barbeque and evening event with live entertainment, following the formal presentation and recognition of the sponsorship deal.
So it seems that it’s not only about £250,000 per week salaries in football – it’s about the important role amateur grass root sports clubs play in the community, the positive, long lasting impact they can have and the mutual rewards that come from giving something back!
For more information please contact Ray Gerlach on: 07957 477 040 or email: email@example.com
About Alexandra Park Club
The Alexandra Park Club has been in existence for over a century, with the Cricket section being founded in 1888, the adult Football shortly after in 1898 and the youth Football joining the ranks in 1995. The Alexandra Park Football Club is a founder member of the Amateur Football Alliance in 1908, and now boasts 10 men’s sides and a women’s team, together with 29 youth sides (26 boys and 3 girls), creating one of the largest amateur clubs in the capital.
14Fourteen was founded in January 2011 with the aim to design, create, develop, manufacture and distribute precision engineered sportswear worldwide. Currently the company enjoys distribution contracts covering all continents and continues to develop its network worldwide. The company name is inspired by the 14 principles by which they live and stand for. As well as design, innovation and quality, 14Fourteen ensures that all manufacturing adheres to the highest ethical, quality control and best practice standards.