Barking school football team represent West Ham at Anfield
PUBLISHED: 11:41 10 May 2013
A school football team went from practising on their concrete playground in Barking to playing at Liverpool FC’s Anfield stadium.
The Ripple Primary School footballers beat off competition from other nearby schools to be given the honour of representing West Ham in the Premier League Schools Tournament.
They head up to Anfield on Thursday (9) to compete in the finals against 20 teams representing every Premier League club in the country.
The eight 10- to 11-year-olds managed to beat the first three teams in their group - Reading, Norwich and Stoke - but lost out by one goal to Fulham who went on to win the tournament.
Football coach Gavin Mainwaring said: “The experience for them was really amazing. They loved being able to play on the Anfield pitch and got to meet Liverpool player Lucas Leiva.”
The Ripple players practice once a week but having no green space to play on means they are more used to concrete than grass.
Gavin commented: “It is a massive achievement especially as the only training facility is the school playground.”
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