Ability counts for football mad youngsters

Wellingborough OGIs
Wellingborough OGIs

Teams who play in a disability football league held their final matches of the season yesterday (Saturday, June 15).

The Northamptonshire Ability Counts Football League was set up just over a year ago and is run by volunteers. They held a football festival at Corby’s S&L ground followed by a presentation of trophies.

The league is for children aged 12 to 16 and consists of six teams who are mixed age, sex and ability. Treasurer Claire Bland said: “The league was set up by Sean Waite with help from Northamptonshire FA and is now run by a group of parents. Most of the children who play have learning difficulties and struggle to play mainstream football.”

This season the league has played at Wellingborough Old Grammarians ground but next season they hope to meet eight times and split the venues between Wellingborough and Corby, they also hope to split the ages. Claire said: “We want to have teams for Year 7 to 10 and Year 11 to 13. Any children who are at junior school are welcome to come along and we arrange a coaching session for them.”

One of Claire’s sons, Callum, has cerebral palsy and was scouted playing in the league by the West Midlands Cerebral Palsy squad. Claire said: “This league has been absolutely brilliant for him.”

The winners of yesterday’s tournament were Wellingborough OGI’s. The winning players were Callum, Lewis, Ashley, Aaron, Kyle, Brandon, Tom and Sam, who are coached by James Venney, Ashley Bland and Kris Ardle.

If anyone would like to know more about the Northamptonshire Ability Counts Football League they can contact Claire at claire@bland2354.freeserve.co.uk