Blackpool’s brave bid to defend walking football crown

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Blackpool FC Community Trust’s Walking Football team competed in the EFL Walking Football National Finals at Aston Villa’s training complex, on Saturday.

The Blackpool team won the national title last year at St George’s Park, Staffordshire, defeating Sheffield United in the final, but the Seasiders couldn’t quite defend their title, knocked out in the semi-finals this time around.

Blackpool were pitted against some stern competition in the group stage.

The first fixture saw the BFFC Trust’s Walking Football team take on Colchester United in a tense game which ended goalless.

The Seasiders then sealed consecutive victories against Luton Town and Bradford City, both games ending 1-0, before defeating Notts County by the same score to win tyhrough to the semis as group winners

The semi-final saw the Tangerines take on Kidderminster, which was a stalemate – two good teams cancelling each other out.

Penalties loomed and it was heartache for Blackpool as the Harriers sealed a dramatic 16-15 shoot-out victory.

Blackpool FC Community Trust’s inclusion officer, Owen Coyle said: “It was a fantastic day despite the semi-final heartbreak.

“It is great to see a group presenting the town and the club, who regularly attend our weekly sessions.

“That work is obviously paying off.

“I’d encourage anyone over the aged of 50 to get involved and give it a go.”

For more information on Blackpool FC Community Trust’s Walking Football programme, call (01253) 348691.