Everton in the Community’s award-winning Kicks programme recently staged what is hoped will become an annual tournament at Toxteth’s Firefit Hub set up in memory of a former participant who tragically passed away a few months ago.
Connor Berry was a regular participant with the Club’s official charity’s sessions, and would have been pleased to see the six teams, including Everton Home and Away, as well as representatives from Blackpool, Wigan, Aston Villa, as well as James GreenopLegacy Kicks Project, taking part.
A tournament packed with sportsmanship was eventually won by Wigan, who overcame James Greenop Legacy Kicks, who have clearly benefitted from a visit from Blues Under-21 coach David Unsworth, in a tense final.
Every player received a commemorative medal with the winning team also collecting a trophy.
A number of Community staff provided a real footballing atmosphere courtesy of a full sound system which produced a soundtrack packed with football anthems including ,of course, Z Cars.
Each participating club also donated a number of signed items to go on a memory board at the Westvale Centre where Connor attended Kicks sessions.
Kicks is an initiative funded by the Premier League, Merseyside Council and Merseyside Police that works towards creating stronger, more respectful communities through football.
Working in partnership with Liverpool Mutual Homes, Beechwood Ballantyne Community Housing, Knowsley council and Merseyside Police youth engagement team, Everton in the Community lead football sessions in areas which have high incidents of crime and anti-social behaviour to encourage children to develop their potential.
The initiative has proved both popular and successful and as a result a significant drop in crime has been reported by Merseyside Police.
For further information on Kicks, click here.