A village school football team will be given an open top bus welcome after being crowned National Champions in the finals of the ESFA Danone Nations Cup.
Having triumphed earlier in the year in the county knockout rounds and the resulting north east regional final, Barkston Ash Primary competed at Leicester City’s King Power Stadium in the Small Schools Cup at the ESFA Danone Nations Cup National Finals last Sunday.
Barkston Ash Primary School team began the day looking to start as they meant to go on; securing seven points from a possible nine in the group stage to book their place in the knockout rounds.
They faced Caythorpe in the semi-finals, winning 3-0. Barkston beat Kilham on penalties after an unbelievable display of football and a 0-0 draw.
The team is now set to celebrate the victory with an open top bus tour around Tadcaster on a date to be confirmed.
Charlotte Broos, CSR manager at Danone said: “Congratulations to Barkston Ash Primary School who had a sensational tournament.
“They played extremely well throughout the numerous rounds and secured a well-deserved victory in the final.
“The local community really got behind the team and the support paid off, Barkston Ash Primary School are champions of England!”
Former Tottenham, Liverpool and England centre back John Scales, ambassador of the tournament said: “Hats off to the team for an outstanding performance at the national finals.
“I watched several of their games including the thrilling final itself and their performance more than earned them the victory.
“I am so proud to have so closely supported the Danone Nations Cup for more than 10 years now.
“It’s a truly remarkable project that brings joy to thousands of kids nationally.
“Being active, eating well, having fun and working hard as part of a team are fundamental pillars of influencing the many that participate and these were all on show at this year’s finals.”
The ESFA Danone Nations Cup is a unique FIFA approved tournament, which has been given the Government’s Inspired by 2012 seal of approval.
It is an annual highlight in Danone’s ongoing programme of support for healthy lifestyles through education, fun and fairplay, which includes its ‘Eat Like A Champ’ healthy eating initiative.