England legend Martin Keown honours Sidcup youngsters at FA Community Awards
PUBLISHED: 15:37 10 August 2016 | UPDATED: 15:37 10 August 2016
The youngsters collected their award ahead of the Charity Shield match on Sunday
Youngsters from a Sidcup football club met Martin Keown last Sunday as they collected an award for their grassroots efforts.
The former Arsenal and England star presented Darcey Childsworth and Oliver Forde from Foots Cray Lions junior football club with their award after they were named FA Charter Standard Development Club at the 2016 FA Community Awards.
An inclusive, player-centred approach has contributed to the Lions’ success, and it is home to 30 individual teams, including five girls’ teams.
The club aids the participation and development of young people within the club and local community, with older players encouraged to gain their FA Level 1 qualification in a safe, secure environment.
It has so far successfully mentored 20 young coaches and 16 referees, seven of whom have won a Bexley Young People’s Sports Award.
The youngsters collected their award ahead of the Charity Shield game between Leicester and Manchester United, and at half-time they joined World Cup Winner Sir Geoff Hurst on the pitch in front of the capacity crowd.
Sir Geoff said: “The dedication and commitment Foots Cray Lions have shown is incredible and they are undoubtedly deserving of this recognition.
“The national game depends upon the help of clubs like Foots Cray Lions at a grassroots level.
“Without their passion and support, young footballers in this country wouldn’t be able to develop or thrive. It was a pleasure to meet Darcey and Oliver on Sunday and give them my congratulations on winning the award in person.”
This year, the FA and McDonald’s received over 2,200 nominations to the FA Community Awards.