Cerebral Palsy Football thrilled football fans at St George’s Park as part of the 2016 FA Disability Cup
As part of the inaugural 2016 FA Disability Cup Finals Day, this event marks the start of a major period of activity in disability football, culminating with the Great Britain Cerebral Palsy (CP) side participating in the Paralympic Games in Rio this September.
In the Powerchair Cup Final, Watford’s Aspire took on Northern Thunder from the north east while the Blind Cup Final, saw Sporting Club Albion take on RNC Shrews.
The Cerebral Palsy Final featured North West side Cerebral Palsy United and Chelsea Foundation – who qualified as winners of the northern and southern conferences respectively.
“We are delighted to be working in partnership with the Wheelchair Football Association National League, CP Sport National CP Football League and the National Blind Futsal League,” said Colin Chaytors, Chair of The FA Disability Football Committee.
“It is our ambition that The FA Disability Cup Finals Day will become a permanent fixture on the football calendar, so that we can celebrate the achievements of those involved, whilst also raising awareness of the opportunities that exist for everyone within disability football.”
Special guests for the CP Football Match included CP Sport Chairman – Paul Goodman, CP Sport Ambassador and former Paralympic CP Football – Leon Taylor, former head of CP Football for CPISRA – Bob Fisher and 2015 CP World Games Games Starter & former Paralympic referee Pat Smith.
CP United FC’s founder Michelle Willcock spoke of their ambition ahead of the game with Chelsea by proclaiming:
“The club’s ethos is about developing players. It is nice for the team to get to the final, but real success for us is the growth of the club and the more players with CP being able to access football is the ultimate aim for our club.”
“Trophies are great but they are a bi-product of focusing on development and getting the environment right for the players involved.”
A huge thank you to the officials who supported not only this event, but show great support the CP Sport National CP Football League.
“It is always an honour and a pleasure to officiate at CP football matches. This is especially so when making use of the excellent facilities at SGP complete with its beautiful surroundings. It was a special day for me, topped off when my husband and I went to watch the Blind Football – we were awestruck.” – Jayne Hart
“The day was good participation, despite the result, from both teams and club officials and a real good support from on lookers. The whole day was a magical experience and such good quality football played, really enjoyed it.” – Minesh Gupta
“Just want to reiterate my thanks for the appointment to the FA Disability Cup Final, & express what a wonderful experience the day was, look forward to being involved in further CP events.” – Terry Jeyes
“The day went really well, really nice meeting officials, team players and staff as well as all who made the day really successful. I really enjoyed the occasion and seeing the smiles and enjoyment with everyone concerned with the day. Congratulations to all.” – John Taylor