On Saturday 11th October Premier League Kicks teams from all over the country arrived at London’s famous Hackney Marshes football pitches to contest the Premier League 2014 National Kicks Cup.
The Blackpool FC Community Trust Kicks team had an early start leaving Bloomfield road at 5am with an air of anticipation and excitement amongst the players. With the opportunity to play some of the best Kick teams in the country, the pressure was on for the Seasiders to perform.
Blackpool were drawn in a strong group with Brighton, Oldham, West Ham, Birmingham and Coventry. Each team had a tough task ahead with only a number of places up for grabs in the knock-out stages.
The team got off to a flying start, beating Brighton 1-0 in a close contest, the next game saw a dominate defeat against Oldham winning 4-0. West Ham were next up for the Seasiders, a game which saw end to end action, West Ham managed to seal the three points, winning 2-1.
Following the lunch break which featured an excellent anti substance and crime workshop from Paul Hannaford, Blackpool returned to the football with a hard fought 0-0 draw against Birmingham. The last group game versus Coventry also finished in a goalless stalemate. Despite some great performances and excellent wins Blackpool eventually finished third in the group, four points behind the group winners West Ham.
West Ham, the only team to beat Blackpool, were the eventual overall winners of the Kicks Cup 2014 beating Blackburn Rovers 2-1 in the Final.
Former Bolton player, and Premier League ambassador, Fabrice Muamba presented the trophy and was on hand to talk and take photographs with the young people who competed in the tournament.
Each player received a Premier League goody bag containing an official England Shirt and a Nike football.
Callum Richards, Blackpool FC Community Trust Kicks team had this to say about his experience of the 2014 Premier League Kicks Cup : “It was brilliant to be involved today. Even though we didn’t qualify we’ve had an ace day and we played really well. It was great to meet lads from around the country. We all enjoy coming to Kicks as we get to play football and enter tournaments like this.”