Lacewood Primary youngsters represent Barnsley in EFL area finals

Pupils from Lacewood Primary School represented Barnsley FC and Reds in the Community in a six-a-side EFL U11 kids cup northern finals earlier today.

The competition, which was played at Leeds United’s academy, brought together 12 clubs from the North of England.

Barnsley’s team were paired in a group with Burton Albion, Hull City, Middlesbrough, Preston North End and Sheffield Wednesday.

In what a tightly-contested group, the side managed to pick up a 2-0 win over Burton thanks to goals from captain Franklin Middleton and George Blaydes while they also held Wednesday to a goalless draw in their final game.

Four points wasn’t enough to progress into the semi-finals of the tournament but Lacewood teacher Ryan Hallsworth said it was still a great day for the children.

“It’s been really good,” said Hallsworth. “It’s a good competition. I was saying earlier that it was a massive competition so they’ve done really well to get this far. It’s been a really good achievement. We’ve won one and drawn one but just to get this far is the main thing.

“In the first couple of games, they looked nervous. They’ve gone from dominating teams in other competitions to coming up against better players. The Burton game that they won they were outstanding and they looked how I know they can play. At the end against Sheffield Wednesday, I think they deserved to win that. It was only their ‘keeper that stopped them.”

Hallsworth also admitted that his players particularly enjoyed pulling on the Reds shirt and representing both Barnsley Football club and the town of Barnsley.

“I think that’s the main part of it to be fair. Our kit was running late. They asked us to play in our non-uniform but I said no straight away because a big part of today is actually representing your town and pulling on that Barnsley shirt. They’ve all been really pleased to wear it.”

The full team is below:

Ashton Powney, Mikey Siddons, Jess Williams, Callum Aitken, George Blaydes, Franklin Middleton (c), Finlay O’Grady, Robbie Billam.