EFL Kids Cup finalists in safe hands at Rovers

Blackburn Rovers goalkeepers David Raya and Jayson Leutwiler offered their support to the club’s EFL Kids Cup finalists Whitefield Primary by hosting a special hour long training session with the school.

The training session, which was held on the 4G surface at Priory Academy in Penwortham, Preston, was in preparation for the regional finals of the competition next month.

Raya and Leutwiler held a variety of different sessions including passing, dribbling and of course, their speciality, goalkeeping, for the primary schools young shot stoppers.

The children finished off with a mini game between themselves, which provided Raya and Leutwiler the opportunity to observe and offer any advice leading up to Whitefield’s EFL Kids Cup showdown in March at Wigan Athletic’s Robin Park Arena.

A win for Whitefield and Rovers will see the South Ribble based primary school don the famous blue and white jersey at Wembley Stadium in May in the EFL Kids Cup final ahead of the League One Play-Off final.

Leutwiler, who lives less than a mile away from Whitefield, hopes they can go all the way and reach the EFL Kids Cup final at the home of English football.

“We were there to offer advice and help Whitefield prepare for their matches coming up,” admitted the Canadian international.

“They all seemed to enjoy the training session we put on and straight away we could tell how much they love football.

“They are now playing for a chance to reach Wembley and I am sure it will be a dream come true for them if they can go all the way. I really hope they do well and I wish them all the best in the regional finals.”

To find out more information about the EFL Kids Cup visit: www.efltrust.com/kidscup/

Kinder + Sport Kids Cup Finals at Wembley

The Kinder + Sport Kids Cups on the hallowed Wembley turf saw a Wimbledon double bill, the best goal of the playoff weekend and the dreams of 48 children come true. Prior to making it to Wembley, all those that took part had to go through a number of qualifying stages to represent their local teams.

In the League 1 final, Norton Free Primary School representing Sheffield United, met Eye Primary School representing Peterborough United, and following a dominant display ran out 1-0 victory! Mackenzie Maltby scored an absolute screamer of a goal… arguably the best of the Play-Off weekend! Although the Norton players saw a lot of the ball in the first half they were unable to take their chances, with Ben Kemp, Danny Church and Bradley Taylor all going close. The winning goal came in the 2nd half when a throw from Frankie Hirst found Danny Church, who passed it onto Mackenzie Maltby who struck a first time shot from 20 yards into the top right corner. It was a goal worthy of winning any game at any level and the full time whistle brought amazing celebrations amongst the Norton Free players.

Represented by Hilton Primary School, Derby County were crowned as the champions of the Kinder+ Sport Football League Kids Cup at Wembley Stadium, winning 2-0 over Ipswich Town represented by Britannia Primary School! Captain Kaide Gordon opened the scoring with a fine long-range effort in the first half before he turned provider for Jack Harrison in the second period.

Cleves School represented AFC Wimbledon in the League 2 finals, taking on Mansfield Town represented by Samuel Barlow Primary School. Wimbledon dominated most of the game claiming a 2-0 victory, despite an uneventful first half with Mansfield captain Aidan Reader taking a long-range free-kick, and Vigrass also seeing his effort steer narrowly wide of the post. Dons turned on the style in the second half, and went ahead through Munroe after he planted his shot into the bottom-left corner. Vigrass followed it up with a similar strike, rounding three Stags players before also finding the bottom corner of the net, ensuring AFC Wimbledon’s name was etched onto the Kinder+Sport Kids Cup trophy.
kids cup- AFC wimbledon

kids cup- afc wimbledon

Wimbledon Double Bill at Wembley!

There will be a Wimbledon double bill at Wembley this weekend when the boys from Cleves School compete in the Kinder +Sport Football League Kids Cup at Wembley, leading the way for the first team who will then compete in the play-off finals against Plymouth for a place in league 1!

Joe Roberts, AFC Wimbledon Foundation’s Sports Development Manager, said: “We are proud that Cleves School have earned the opportunity to represent the club at Wembley and it’s even better that the first-team will be bidding for promotion on the same day. The performances from Cleves School’s footballers and their behaviour off the pitch has been a real credit to them and the football club. Let’s hope for a double on the day!”

Here is a special message from the boys at Cleves School, wishing The Dons good luck! This is followed by Ade Akifenwa, Lyle Taylor and the rest of the team returning the well wishes and giving a special shout out to all of the team:



Hilton Primary School Prepare to Represent Derby at Wembley

A group of under 11 boys from Hilton Primary School have gone through their last steps of preparation before representing Derby County at Wembley for the Kinder+ Sport Football League Kids Cup Final.

Winning the Derby County Community Trust’s local and regional finals, Max Tolley, Kaide Gordon, Jack Leighton, Josh Pearch, Ben Horleston, Alex Birch, Harry Atwal & Jack Harrison qualified to represent Derby at Wembley in the National final on Saturday (28th May). It is there that they will take on representatives from Ipswich Town on the pitch ahead of the Championship Play Off Final.

Derby County Community Trust have been on hand to prepare the boys for the National Final. Friday 20th May saw coaches from the trust visit Etwall Leisure Centre for their last training session before Wembley. The session entailed passing and shooting drills, as well as a rundown of what to expect on the day of the final, where they will be treated as professional footballers.

The Hilton Primary School boys will also be given the opportunity to watch Hull City and Sheffield Wednesday battle it out for a place in the Premier League.

Following the training session, Hilton Primary Teacher Julia Coxon said:

“The boys are really excited to be playing at Wembley and can’t believe they’ve got this chance. Most of them have ambitions to go on and become famous footballers so it’s great that the Derby County Community Trust and Football League have given them an opportunity to play on such a big stage.”

On the teams’ route to the final she added: “Everyone at the school is so proud of them and what they’ve achieved, having beaten off competition from 80 other local schools to represent Derby County, then to come out on top against 12 teams at the regionals is a fantastic achievement. We are all behind them to go all the way on Saturday!”

Kinder +Sport Kids Cup Finalist Given Tour of the Stadium

Since representing Peterborough in the regional finals of the Kinder +Sport Kids Cup in Coventry, Eye C of E Primary School have become local champions!

The boys were invited to ABAX Stadium in Peterborough for the last home game of the season, taking a ground tour, and being paraded around the stadium!


As a result of their victory, the boys have been given the once in a lifetime opportunity to play the North England Champion in the national finals, prior to the League One Play-Off Final on Sunday 29th May!


The successful players were Matthew Mills, Cameron Broomfield, Sam Johnson, Ellis Young, George Whiteman, Riley Taylor, Luke Simpson Morris and Hayden Brown.

Headteacher Mr J. Webster was delighted: “What a fantastic achievement! We are so proud of the lads and are now busy getting as many parents and children as possible together to make the trip to Wembley to support our team.”



Kids Wembley Dreams Can Come True

The Football League’s Girls and Kids Cup gives school children across the country the chance to compete for an exciting, once in a lifetime opportunity, to play at Wembley Stadium.

The competitions, which are run by The Football League Trust, get underway at the end of the month and will involve over 20,000 children.  Combined, the Cups create one of the country’s largest national football competitions, which culminate in exciting finals at Wembley Stadium in front of thousands of fansbefore a major football final, as schoolchildren live out their dream.

Shaun Harvey, Chief Executive of the Football League commented, “Thanks to deep rooted connections of Football League clubs to their communities, last year over 1.5 million people across the country took part in Football League Trust projects with 22,000 children contesting the Kids and Girls Cups.
“To play at Wembley is a dream for millions of young people and The Football League is proud to make this dream a reality for another group of budding young players and their families.”

Two children whose dreams came true last year were Lawrence Cooper and Alex Fugle. Lawrence scored the winning goal for Huncoats School who were representing Accrington Stanley in the League 2 Kids Cup Final, he said:   “When I scored it was overwhelming, words can’t describe how good it felt. I’ve been dreaming of the moment I score at Wembley for a long time, ever since I can remember. My Dad was in the crowd and he was excited to see me play, so I wanted to win it for him.”

Alex of Elthorne High School, who scored the only goal of the Girls Cup final as Brentford beat Hartlepool, she said “It felt amazing. I’ve always wanted to play at Wembley and score. It’s the best feeling in the whole world.”

The competitions have a unique format.  Each of the 72 Football League clubs run a competition for their local schools, with the winners representing their club, through various stages, on the road to Wembley.

Last season saw both Kids and Girls Cup attract a record numbers of entrants. The total number of boys and girls taking part across both competitions last this year was over 22,000. Mirroring the growth in Women’s football generally the Girls Cup recorded an impressive 20% rise in participation with over 6000 girls taking part.  Whilst the Kids Cup recorded a huge increase of 35% from 2013/14 with 1,974 schools participating against 1,370 in the previous year.

The Football League Girls Cup is a six-a-side competition for girls aged under 13. Each club’s winners represent the club at area and then regional stages, culminating in a grand final prior to the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy Final at Wembley Stadium on the 3rd April, 2016
The Football League Kids Cup is a six-a-side competition for children under 11, and sees the 72 clubs split into 3 divisions, in line with club’s divisional status, before being again split into two groups, north and south. The winners of the divisional northern and southern finals then qualify for the chance to play at Wembley before the Sky Bet Football League Play-Off Final of the relevant division.
Schools that wish to take part are encouraged to contact their local Football League club for more details. Further information how how to take part contact your local Football League club’s community trust

Blackburn Rovers crowned Kinder+Sport Championship Kids Cup winners

Blackburn Rovers lifted the Kinder+Sport Championship Kids Cup after a 3-2 penalty shoot-out victory over AFC Bournemouth at Wembley Stadium.

Oliver Rawson struck the winning spot-kick for Rovers, who were represented by Salesbury C of E Primary School, after a tense goalless draw.

Despite the lack of goals, both teams had chances during the allotted 14 minutes of play.

Rovers’ Daniel Rawson blazed the best opportunity of the match over the bar when one-on-one with Bournemouth stopper Sam Bradbury, while Ryan Finnigan fired wide for the Cherries after creating a chance for himself in the second period.

Both teams performed admirably but it had to be settled by penalties. The first four spot-kicks were immaculately tucked away, then Liam Finnigan was unlucky to see his effort come back off the post, allowing Rawson to find the top corner for glory.

After lifting the Championship Kids Cup trophy, Rawson said: “It’s a great feeling to score a penalty at Wembley and know that you’re the best Championship side in England at this level.  

“All my family and friends were in the crowd and it was great having them all here. It was brilliant to be out on the pitch and experience the atmosphere.”

Teacher Stephen Bird, who accompanied the Salesbury C of E Primary School students at the national stadium, said: “I’m immensely proud of them all.

“It’s been a great season that’s contained its ups and downs and I’m really impressed with all of the boys.

“They had nerves of steel in the penalty shoot-out – they never gave up.”

The 2015 Kinder+Sport Kids Cup has seen over 16,700 children take part in the nationwide competition which is an increase of more than 1,000 from previous years. The competition, for children under the age of 11, culminates in a final at Wembley before the Sky Bet Football League Play-Off Finals this Bank Holiday Weekend.

The Kids Cup falls under the Kinder+Sport Project, which is a key part of Ferrero’s global CSR activity and in the UK sees Ferrero partner with The Football League Trust to increase the levels of physical activity, promote nutritional education and build awareness of the importance of a balanced diet and active lifestyle amongst children.

In the UK Ferrero also support the + Sport Move and Learn Project which is a schools-based programme targeting nine to 10-year-olds. It sets out to move over 21,000 children and deliver over 190,000 hours of activity and education over the 2014/15 school year across the UK and Ireland.

Blackburn Rovers (represented by Salesbury C of E Primary School): Jacob Mithoo (GK), Conner Eccleston (Capt), Lanre Okeweusi, Adam Wharton, Ishan Goshawk, Daniel Rawson, Jack Wilson, Oliver Rawson.

AFC Bournemouth (represented St James C of E Primary School): Sam Bradbury (GK), Ryan Finnigan (Capt), Conner Moore, Tommy Gwynfryn-Evans, Monty Moberly, Jamie Drake, Liam Finnigan, Ethan Quarchioni.

Image by: Scott Heavey/EMPICS Sport