BERTIE Peacock Youths Under-11’s came back with a lot more than a stick of rock from their end of season trip to Blackpool.
After a hard season in the South Belfast League in which the boys secured a very credibla third placed finish they headed off with their coaches to the English seaside resort to take part in the Fleetwood Cup.
They knew they would be in for some tough games against older boys due to the English FA’s policy on age groups which sees them take the birthdays from September to September as opposed to the Northern Ireland standard of January to January.
So what happened over the weekend on the field was somewhat unexpected as the boys not only gained a lot of praise from their English and Scottish opponents for their manners and style of football but they also went on to lift the very impressive cup winning a nail biting final in a penalty shootout.
The 12 team tournament was split into two groups of six.
On day one Berties produced some great football recording wins ofver Town Green Blues (3-1) and Brierly Cubs (5-0) before drawing 1-1 with Dumbarton Youth. Goal scorer were Vance, Wan, Boorman and Brennan.
Day two would prove tougher but the Little Ants knew they were still in with a chance of winning the group so credit to all the boys as they rolled there sleeves up and recorded another two wins against Larkhall United (1-0) and JFC Greasby (3-1) with goals coming from Vance, Boorman, Moorcroft and Wan.
These victories were enough to take the boys through despite the free flowing football from the day one not being there their effort and commitment carried them through.
In the final the boys faced Manchester outfit Uppermill Youth who had won the other group with upward of 250 watching on.
From the start the strength and speed of Uppermill had Berties camped in their own half for long periods of the game and they went close to scoring a number of times.
But this group of boys have a fighting sprit beyond belief and just looked impossible to score against. And they were proving to be very dangerous on the break going close themselves.
The game though finished 0-0 after extra time so it moved on to penalties and in a tense shootout Berties came out the winners 3-1 to bring the impressive cup back to Coleraine.
It capped a memorable trip for the boys, who also spent time at Blackpool’s famous Pleasure Beach and Madame Tussaud’s, and they deserved it for all their hard work over the season, they can be very proud of what they have achieved.
The coaches of the Under-11s would also like to take this opportunity to thank the parents of the boys for their help over the season with sorting transport, organising trips, lifting money etc. Your help is very much appreciated and goes a long way in making this age group what it is.
The under 11s will be playing in the National League next season and are looking to strengthen their panel if interested contact Rob on 07919524123 to arrange a trial.
Bertie Peacock Youths will be holding their annual Soccer School for boys and girls aged between 5 to 11 years old.
The soccer school will started on Monday 14 May and will run for six consecutive weeks. Location will be at the Coleraine College Pitches, Carthall Road from 6.30pm until 8pm. On the first night there will be a £10.00 per child registration fee, for the remaining five weeks it will be £2.00 per child, per night. Boots and shin pads should be worn. All players will be made very welcome and as a club we look forward to coaching and more importantly, continuing to develop the young generation.