Dorking Wanderers, based in Surrey, UK, have achieved remarkable success, securing a British record 12 promotions since forming in 1999. The club has climbed from the seventeenth tier of English football to the fifth tier, currently competing in the National League.

Marc White is the founder, owner, and manager of Dorking. Under White’s leadership, Dorking are now one of the most recognisable teams outside of the Premier League and were recently featured on the popular FX show, Welcome to Wrexham Season 2.

Dorking Wanderers’ Executive Director, Kris Lea, said: “We are absolutely delighted to be partnering with VMI, and the reciprocal opportunities this will present for both our Academy students and the VMI players. From the moment I met Nick I could see that his enthusiasm for the game, and player development both on and off the field, were nothing short of inspiring, and this is epitomised by the success he has deservedly enjoyed since he took up his role overseeing VMI Men’s Soccer”.

Lea continued: “We’re very excited to welcome Nick, his colleagues and squad to Meadowbank on March 28th, and we have no doubt that this visit will be the first of many visits in either direction as our two organisations embark on this unique partnership”.  

VMI is based in Lexington, Virginia and is one of the oldest colleges in the United States. Priding itself on being an elite leadership institution, its former students include George C. Marshall, George Patton, as well as many State Governors, U.S Senators, U.S Congressman, and even a Supreme Court Justice.

As of late, VMI Men’s Soccer has seen a resurgence in form with Surrey-born Nick Regan as Manager/Head Coach. Entering his third year, Regan recently led the team to its best season in 17 years. VMI competes in NCAA DI, the highest level of college soccer in the United States.

Regan commented: “Together with our partners in Dorking we are setting a new standard for how collegiate programs provide pathways and experiences for its players and coaches, while simultaneously expanding opportunities for DWFC players and staff. I know I speak for everyone here at VMI when I say that our match on March 28th will be an incredible experience. On a personal note, I first visited the original Meadowbank in 2002 to watch my brother play, so to lead a team out there over 20 years later will be a special moment”.

The partnership will provide pathways and guidance for Dorking Academy players to study and play in the US, as well as giving VMI players opportunities to train in the UK. Coaches from both teams will share resources and will periodically travel to observe each other’s programming.

Dorking Wanderers’ Director of Football & Education, Jordan Clark, said: “As Director of Football I am thrilled to announce the multi-year partnership between Dorking Wanderers and Virginia Military Institute (VMI) Men’s Soccer. This collaboration marks an exciting opportunity for both clubs to exchange expertise, resources, and talent, fostering mutual growth and success on and off the field. We look forward to a fruitful partnership ahead.”

US based Dorking Wanderers part-owner and Director Kyle Shestack equally shared his delight regarding the formation of this new partnership: “I believe the faster the club can expand its global footprint, the faster we can grow. We could not be more excited about the launch of this partnership. Nick Regan has a brilliant football mind, and he has revamped the VMI program in a short period of time. I believe this will strengthen our US-UK connection for coaches and players alike. This is an impactful moment as both organisations hope to grow and expand their resources across the world.”

To kick-off the partnership on the field, Dorking Wanderers B Team will host VMI on March 28th at Meadowbank Stadium – 6.30pm kick off. Entry is free for all on the night (turnstiles open from 5pm).