One of them is St Michael’s Middle School from Poole & East Dorset. The team will be making a bid to cement themselves as the best in England in their age group of the ESFA U12 PlayStation FC 9-a-side Small Schools’ Cup.
They will compete against St Mary’s College Crosby from Sefton at 2.30pm on Tuesday 13 October 2020. The game, which will be live streamed with full commentary, will determine who will be crowned National Champions for the 2019/20 season.
Robin Wallis, the football coach at St Michael’s Middle School – part of Wimborne Academy Trust – said, “We are so proud of the boys and so glad that they have followed in the footsteps of other great St Michael’s teams by getting to a National Final. We are sure whatever the outcome they will give their all.”
Over 6,000 teams entered the 2019/20 National Cup competitions in September 2019 and since then, have travelled across the country and competed in the knockout stages of the competitions.
The ESFA is delighted to have found a venue to allow these finals to take place, bringing the 2019/20 season to a close. Due to COVID-19 related restrictions will be in place at Lilleshall. In a change to the usual crowd-filled stadium atmosphere, spectators are unfortunately not permitted to attend, however, the ESFA is delighted that this and all other matches will be streamed live online via the ESFA’s YouTube channel, ESFA TV, with full commentary.
Coverage will also include a live ‘player of the match’ vote, which will be held via the ESFA’s Twitter channel (@schoolsfootball), where a shortlist of ‘players of the match’ will be announced approximately 10 minutes prior to the end of the match. Viewers will be able to vote in the online poll to determine which of our national finalists is awarded this prestigious honour.
The English Schools’ FA has been determined to give young players the opportunity to complete the 2019/20 football season, when deemed safe to do so, despite the on-going global pandemic.
Phil Harding, ESFA Chairman said, “When lockdown was imposed back in March, the ESFA was very clear that, when possible and if safe to do so, we would stage the National Finals and give everyone involved the unique and special experience of an opportunity to create those lifelong memories that epitomise representing your school, district or county.
“Unfortunately, we will be doing so without the atmosphere of a stadium and spectators, but the Lilleshall National Sports Centre is an iconic venue, steeped in history where many top events across a variety of sports have been held. We hope that many parents, other family members and supporters of the teams involved will be able to watch the games on our live streaming service.
“Schools’ football is where education and sport flourish, where we develop knowledge alongside skills and values, and where young people can be competitive, considerate and truly enjoy their football. Our National Finals showcase these characteristics, but they are only possible with the hard work and dedication of a huge number of people who give freely of their time and expertise.”
The ESFA has carried out extensive risk assessment work on the event, however, continue to monitor the situation on the lead up to the first matches in case of any significant changes that may impact on the event.
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