Each year the Premier League hosts a competition to give schools the chance to represent their club against other PL teams from across the country. Over five weeks, Manchester United Foundation held tournaments at partner school Irlam and Cadishead College to decide which teams would be put forward to represent Manchester United on 20th May at rivals Manchester City’s home ground.
A total of 109 schools took part in the local tournaments resulting in Moston Lane Primary U11 boys, from Harpurhey, and Wright Robinson College U13 girls, from Gorton, emerging victorious.
Adam Parkinson, team coach and PE teacher at Moston Lane primary school, spoke of what the victory means to the pupils: “It’s just a fantastic honour, the children are all made up and I’m bursting with pride. For children from a deprived area in Moston to have the opportunity to do what they’ve done is fantastic. They’re a great team, have great players and great team spirit, but to win on penalties is like an absolute dream.”
11-year-old Cole said, “It feels brilliant because we’re the winners of so many teams. It’s amazing that we’re going to represent Manchester United now; I’m speechless!”
The result is all the more significant for the girls from Wright Robinson College as the same team narrowly missed out on reaching the national final in last year’s competition.
The U13 girls’ coach, Wayne Woodall, commented, “I’ve trained with these girls for two years now and they are a great set of girls. When they want to play and they are good players it’s really good to see, especially in female football as it’s not as high profile as it should be.
“I’m a United fan so it’s great that we will be representing Manchester United and it will be great for the school as well to see some of the girls who aren’t necessarily at the top in all aspects excel in football. Hopefully we can do United and the school proud.”
Team captain Devon, 13, added, “I’m so happy because knowing that we came second last year made us work even harder to get to this point. It feels great to be in the final, we’re hoping coach is going to take us to McDonalds to celebrate!”
Each team will travel to the Etihad stadium on 20th May to represent Manchester United for the chance to be crowned Premier League School Tournament champions 2014.
View images from the event on Facebook.