Youngsters from St. Edwards BESD (Behavioural, Emotional, Social Difficulties) School in Hampshire hosted a national tournament for other BESD schools at our Cobham training base last week.
Organised by the Chelsea Foundation as part of our ongoing relationship with the school in Hampshire, youngsters from eight schools descended on Cobham for the inaugural competition.
The participants, aged 12-16, were split into two groups and played each other in a league format before either progressing to the Cup or Plate knockout stages.
Bowden House School from Sussex were eventually crowned winners after seeing off Oastlers, from Bradford, 2-0 in the final.
Chelsea Foundation programmes, projects and events officer Kenny Dowling, who helped organise the event, said: ‘Through the work we do with St Edwards BESD School we were asked to host the BESD National Schools Tournament here at Cobham.
‘We were of course delighted to do so and on the day itself we were blessed with beautiful sunshine. All teams were thrilled to be invited with several of the players remarking how they felt like a professional footballer!
‘All the teams were on their best behaviour and were a credit to their schools and organisations. The standard of football played was very high and everyone had a great time.
‘We have already started discussions to house this again next year, but this time we would hope to work with organisers to make a much bigger deal of the entire event with preliminary rounds and regional tournaments, before the big final here at Cobham.’