Soccer skills wow youngsters

CHILDREN have been treated to a masterclass in freestyle football at a skills workshop.

Craig Gorey, who holds a number of freestyle world records, showed off his tricks and taught a few to the youngsters who went along.

The workshop, organised by Football Development Schools (FDS) in partnership with West Bromwich Albion FC, was held at Kettering Conference Centre and was open to children of all abilities aged five to 12 years.

Kristian Heames, a director of FDS, said: “It was a really good course. The kids had a great time and learned some really good skills.

“Craig has world records and was trying to teach them how to balance the ball on their ear and swivel it around their head.

“He was showing them things they could take away and practise.

“We had 20 children turn up on the day.”

World freestyle champion John Whetton had been scheduled to show off his skills in front of the children but Mr Heames said he was called away to perform in Qatar at the last minute.

Mr Heames said: “John did take part in our first few workshops but couldn’t do the one in Kettering.

“He organised for Craig to take his place though and he was absolutely brilliant.”

Children were also given the chance to test their accuracy skills by practising on FDS’s ‘hit the player’ inflatable.

FDS will be working with West Bromwich Albion FC to find talented under-16 players to join their brand new college course in September.

Players will be given an education at Montsaye Academy in Rothwell, plus more than 10 hours of professional tuition from UEFA-qualified coaches.

A trial is being held at the academy on Monday, February 23, from 4.30pm to 6.30pm.

For more information or to register your interest in a trial, contact FDS by calling 01858 461166 or email