Staggering success proves an inspiration to us all
On Saturday 11th October, over 600 young people from 47 professional football clubs descended on Hackney Marshes in East London to take part in the 2014 Premier League Kicks Cup – and Millwall U18s girls reigned supreme!
It was the first time the finals had enabled every club running a Kicks programme to participate with teams from afar a field as Plymouth Argyle in the south west to Newcastle United in the North East and from Swansea City in the west to Norwich City in the east competing.
However the winning teams in the U18s and U16s categories were from much closer to home, with Millwall taking top honours in the U18s and West Ham United Community Trust lifting the new trophy in the U16s age group.
Millwall representatives Tom Rolt and Dean Burrowes, who manage the Premier League Kicks programme in Southwark and Lewisham, enthused: "Thank you to the Premier League for yet again creating a once in a lifetime opportunity for the young people we work with.
"The ambassadors, volunteers, workers and players we create within our communities through the programme are an inspiration and gives us all a sense of pride of determination to continue the hard work we all do every day.
"We will continue to make success achievable for every single one of the young people we work with in their steady progressions through their young lives."
Special guests on Saturday included former Bolton Wanderers star Fabrice Muamba and Bermondsey & Old Southwark MP Simon Hughes, who presented the Girls Premier League Cup to Millwall.
Lottie Ivison, captain of the winning Millwall team beamed: "It was a quality day playing against others teams from other parts of the country and a great feeling to bring the trophy back to The Den."
In the past year the programme, which is funded by the Premier League and Sport England, engaged 40,854 young people, who attended in total more than 600,000 times. Of the 780 venues used for Kicks, more than 25% were located in the top 10% most deprived areas in the country and 73% were in the top 30% most deprived areas.
Premier League Kicks originated from the Kickz programme, a partnership between the Premier League and the Metropolitan Police that started in 2006 to use the power of football to build safer, stronger communities.
For more information about the Millwall Premier League Kicks programme please call 020 7740 0503.