A team of seven girls from the St. Matthew’s Project’s Girls-Only Scheme were crowned London regional champions at the ‘StreetGames Football Pools Fives’ tournament at the Westway Leisure Centre, North Kensington on Saturday (22 June).

The girls overcame some very tough opposition, including a team of twenty-somethings and entries from the Chelsea F.C Kickz programme, and had to endure a semi-final penalty shootout before beating Linford Christie Centre 3-1 in the final. In addition, the girls earned a lot of praise from organisers and opponents alike for their sporting attitude and free-flowing football.

The Football Pools Fives Programme provides opportunities for young men and women, aged 16 and over, from disadvantaged areas of the UK to play 5-a-side football and to also experience coaching and try a range of other sports and activities. The event has seen hundreds of local football festivals across the UK, leading to regional festivals in 11 cities.

On top of their cup and medals the SMP girls also received a £250 voucher to spend as they please and earned an all-expenses-paid trip, including an overnight stay in a hotel, to the new National Football Centre at St. George’s Park, Staffordshire on August 3-4, where they will fight it out with the other regional winners in the national final.   …Watch this space!

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