Shaymen to launch Futsal tournament for local schools

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The first ever Futsal tournament for primary schools in Halifax will take place after FC Halifax Town secured funding for the event.

The club’s community sports section have named the tournament The Adam Heslop Cup after a Town supporter who follows them home and away.

It will feature a showcase finale at North Bridge Leisure Centre on Thursday, July 9.

The tournament is open to primary schools, specifically boys and girls in the year six age group and provides the opportunity for budding football stars to play Futsal, a fast moving five-a-side game of South American origin.

Played on a hard, basketball-court sized pitch, using a smaller (size three) weighted and specially designed ball, Futsal is cited by many football legends including Cristiano Ronaldo as being the game that made them the players they are today.

Steve Nichol, Head of Youth, Junior and Community Football Development at Halifax, said: “The project is being supported with a grant awarded by The Football Conference Trust and the FA alongside FC Halifax Town, we hope the tournament will become a yearly event.

“I’m a firm believer in the sport of Futsal and its properties as a development tool for young players, this seemed a good opportunity to develop the game in the area and offer something a little different.

“It is an ideal game for schools, it is highly effective for children aged five-16-years-old and is best played on surfaces such as a school hall, gym or tarmac playgrounds.

“The design of the ball is such that it has a reduced rebound thus encouraging the development of close control and passing, where individual skill and creativity is maximised.

“We made the decision to name the tournament after Adam as has been part of the FC Halifax Town family for a long time, never missing a game home or away.

“This is a fantastic opportunity to get the Halifax community together. have some fun and of course play some football. Adam and his family will be absolutely delighted to have this tournament named after him.”

Sue O’Brien, of The Football Conference Trust, commented: “This is a unique project, with funds coming from three sources.

“The Football Conference has chosen the club – and this good cause - as the recipient for a grant awarded by the FA, as a result of the commitment to their Respect campaign.

“The Football Conference Trust (funded by the Premier League and the PFA) have agreed to match that award, and with the club also contributing a third the tournament will be well supported.

“This joint collaboration will ensure that all partners will be at the event, and will ensure it is well publicised.”

Schools can register their interest by contacting David Phelps on community@fchalifaxtown.com or 07703 773 064.

Entry is free but places limited to a maximum of 12 schools.

As well as participation in the tournament all schools who enter will receive a free coaching session to introduce pupils to the game.