Wembley dream for young team

Hambleton Primary Academy football team have won the North West Championship and will be going to play the final at Wembley Stadium
Hambleton Primary Academy football team have won the North West Championship and will be going to play the final at Wembley Stadium

Fleetwood Town Football Club is guaranteed a place playing at Wembley Stadium, thanks to these pint-sized players.

The team from Hambleton Primary Academy will be representing the Cod Army when they play in the final of the Football League Trust Kids Cup in May.

The youngsters are up for the cup after beating Mansfield 2-1 in the regional final – a victory made even sweeter after the side were the only ones they couldn’t beat on first meeting.

They will be playing in the hallowed ground on May 26, ahead of the League Two play-off final.

Team captain Josh Hampson said: “We can’t wait to play at Wembley. To think that we actually get to play on such a famous pitch is a dream come true.”

Proud headteacher Pamela Birch said: “I’m very, very proud of them, for a rural school to be representing the North West is fantastic.

“Now we’re hoping Fleetwood Town get through the League Two play-offs, so they can play before them.”

The junior team won the Fylde and Wyre competition at Stanley Park earlier in the season, to be chosen to represent Fleetwood Town in the League Two North Finals in Chesterfield.

The young Cod Army side were put in Group B with Accrington Stanley, Burton Albion, Mansfield Town, Northampton Town and Scunthorpe United.

Seeing off Scunthorpe in their first match, Fleetwood unfortunately suffered a 2-0 defeat on match day two at the hands of Mansfield.

However, Fleetwood didn’t let their heads drop and responded by winning their final three group games against Burton, Northampton and Accrington, without conceding a goal, to ensure their place in the knockout stages.

Fellow North West outfit Bury were awaiting, and despite impressing in their group, Fleetwood came through to secure their place in the final.

The Cod Army once again came head to head with Mansfield, the only team to beat them so far in the competition, and it turned out to be the perfect opportunity to claim revenge.

Things didn’t start well for Fleetwood as they conceded early on, but a spirited second half display saw the Cod Army score twice to book their place at Wembley.

Team captain Josh added: “None of us could believe it as we kept winning and progressing.

“The other schools were much bigger than us with lots more boys to choose from, so everyone is really, really proud of us.”

Matt Hilton, Fleetwood Town’s director of community development and education, said: “Fleetwood Town would like to congratulate all involved with Hambleton Primary Academy, and hope they enjoy their day out in the capital.”