Local school to appear in national final

by Foundation of Light

Fulwell Junior School secure regional tournament success.

School students from across the North East have been showing off their soccer skills as part of a national competition. 

For the past few weeks more than 240 young people have been taking part in the North East round of the Premier League Schools Tournament, run by SAFC’s official charity, the Foundation of Light.

Last weekend, the six top teams took part in a regional final at Goals Soccer Centre, Sunderland, with a squad from Fulwell Junior School, Sunderland (pictured) being crowned the overall winners. 

Gregor Robb, teacher at Fulwell Junior School, said: “I’m very proud of how well the boys played during the tournament.  

"They demonstrated good sportsmanship throughout and played some lovely football.  

"Twice they showed resilience to come from a goal behind during the competition, which is a mark of their character and determination.  We’re very excited to represent Sunderland at the finals.”

The six-a-side tournament, open to mixed teams of players aged 11 and under and girls-only teams aged 13 and under, is part of a national initiative designed by the Premier League to engage more boys and girls in football from an early age. 

The north east round, which involved students from more than 30 different schools in Sunderland, County Durham and South Tyneside, was one of a series of regional qualifiers, involving a total of more than 8,000 students from 1,000 schools nationwide.

The team from Fulwell Junior School beat off stiff competition from Cotsford Junior School, Peterlee, East Boldon Junior School, Boldon, Shotley Bridge Junior School, Consett, Whitburn Village Primary School, Whitburn and St Cuthbert’s Primary School, Sunderland to be named north east winners.

They will now go on to the Premier League Schools Tournament National Finals at Manchester City’s Etihad Stadium on May 20, where they will compete against the winners of the other regional heats in matches refereed by top Premier League officials.   

If successful there the team, made up of students Ethan Neal, Jack Wilkinson, Alex Bates, Andrew Nelson, Archie Graham. James Haswell, Harry Wrathmall and Liam Gibson, will walk away with the national title and a replica Premier League trophy.

Ian Archbold, Competition and Events Coordinator at the Foundation of Light, said: “All of the participants played extremely well in the North East round of the Premier League Schools Tournament and should be extremely proud of taking part. 

“I would like to wish the team from Fulwell Junior School the best of luck in the national finals and hope they can bring the trophy back to the North East.”

For more information about the Foundation of Light and its full range of sport and education-based programmes across the North East visit www.foundationoflight.co.uk or call 0191 551 5191.