Football Festival proves a big hit

Sixteen teams took part in the Essex County FA s Girls Football Festival, organised via the Saffron Walden School Sports Partnership and the ECFA s development team. Thirty eight youngsters were there participating in the quickly-growing format of 3 v 3

Sixteen teams took part in the Essex County FA's Girls' Football Festival, organised via the Saffron Walden School Sports Partnership and the ECFA's development team.

Thirty eight youngsters were there participating in the quickly-growing format of 3 v 3 soccer. The girls in Years Five and Six from the Walden area, benefited from having being involved in a program of taster sessions that took place within curriculum time delivered by ECFA community coach, Andy Edmunds.

"An end of term 3 v 3 festival was set-up to celebrate the success of the program. The afternoon saw the 16 teams split into four groups, each team getting to play four games.

At the end of the festivities each girl walked away with an FA certificate and there were goody bags for the winners of each league.


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The program is linked with Walden Spirit FC's School-to-Club Link FA initiative, which has seen 12 girls access weekly sessions at the charter standard club.

The sessions have been led by Beverley Clarkson, a Female FA Level Two coach, and she is confident that eventually the new kids on the pitch will be ready for league football.

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Beverley said: "Some of the players were very keen to get involved. There were children of varying abilities, but they all took something out of the games as they were able to concentrate on their skills more.

"The 3 v 3 matches run alongside our usual training sessions and it all depends on the numbers we have available. Sometimes we have matches of 5 v 5!

"Our club found the support from the Essex County FA really useful as it's difficult to build links between local clubs and schools on your own. It's a really good initiative.

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