A top young team is off to play in the shadow of Wembley Stadium after scooping first place in a national tournament.
Hebburn Town Blues Barca will play in the final of the Indesit Mini Soccer Tournament after beating 12 other teams in the regional heat.
Steve RichardsonThey are so passionate about it and it’s privilege to have such a good group and to have had them for such a long time.
On Saturday, they will take on 12 more as the five-a-side squad plays on the Power League pitches as they aim to collect the winner’s trophy.
They will also take in a tour of the national stadium, with the seven players heading to the capital with a party of 26 family members and supporters as they aim to add to their growing clutch of trophies.
Manager Steve Richardson, 38, who runs the team with his wife Kerry, 33, kept the details of the final a secret until they had got through, with the aim of ensuring the boys concentrated on their game.
He added: “As their coach, I’m very proud of the lads. What they have achieved is unbelievable.
“They have a great attitude, they just love playing the game and I just let them play. I don’t cajole them or shout from the sidelines, I try to remind them what we are trying to do and how we’re playing.
“They are so passionate about it, and it’s privilege to have such a good group and to have had them for such a long time.
“It’s great to have seen them come through from when they were a tots’ group and see how they’ve grown up and gained confidence.”
The team, who are all seven and eight years old, features Harry Richardson, Maddox Evitt, Marc Forster, Toby Winton, Alex Douglas, Ryan Taylor and Nathan Salkeld.