Warm Highland welcome extended to Romanian football team

Ictfc v FC Astra
Vice Convenor Bill Lobban presents a quaich to Mihai Matei, Director of Football, FC Astra watched by Provost Helen Carmichael and Dani Coman.

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The Provost and Leader of Inverness Area and Vice Convener of The Highland Council gave a warm Highland welcome to visitors from FC Astra and UEFA yesterday evening at Inverness Caledonian Thistle Football Club.

The welcome was made to mark Inverness Caledonian Thistle’s first European match which will be against the Romanian side FC Astra today Thursday 16 July.

Provost Helen Carmichael and Vice Convener Bill Lobban presented civic gifts to FC Astra’s President Executive, Dani Coman and Director of Football, Mihai Matei.

Provost Carmichael welcomed the visitors and said: “Inverness is extremely proud of its football team reaching the Europa League for the first time and we are delighted to welcome FC Astra from Giurgiu in Romania to the capital of the Highlands.”

Vice Convener Lobban added: “Playing in the Europa League is a great achievement for Inverness Caledonian Thistle, and we are pleased to be sharing this moment with FC Astra. We hope this will be a catalyst for a bigger following with more fans getting behind the team both now and into the future. I wish them well today and on their second match when they play at Guirgiu on the 23 July.”

UEFA Match Delegate, Eduard Kindle was also warmly welcomed to Inverness by the Highland Councillors and Directors of ICTFC including Ken Thomson who said:

"We're extremely pleased to be able to bring European football to the Highlands and welcome Astra to our city. For a 21-year-old club, it is a massive milestone in our amazing journey from the Highland League.

"Highland Council, and the City of Inverness Area Committee in particular, have always been extremely supportive, also giving us excellent recognition when we won the Scottish Cup for the first time, and we look forward to building on that partnership with them in the coming years.

"We know it will be a challenging evening against a more experienced team at this level but the support of the home crowd will spur on Gary Warren and his team mates on what we hope will be a memorable occasion.

"Astra are extremely welcome in Inverness and we look forward to visiting their country and their city in the second leg next week."

16 Jul 2015
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