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Oakwood Owls Back on Vital Leeds United!

Oakwood Owls Back on Vital Leeds United!

Rod Christopher returns with an Oakwood Owls Update and possibly coming soon, a photo of the big man himself!

Rod sent an e-mail update of the last 3 months of Oakwood Owls action:

During the past 3 months the Oakwood Owls youth service 11-17s football education groups participants have grown from 14,to a very healthy 24 regular attenders and they have enthusiastically involved themselves in a number of events aimed at encouraging multicultural involvement and fair play in local youth service football around the Gipton, Oakwood and Harehills communities.

In April our 15-17s group planned and delivered a three match 7-a-side tournament at Fearnville Astroturf ,against the Bangladeshi Centre U17s. Some very talented youngsters took part in each game, ensuring lots of end to end goalmouth action and lots of enjoyable football. The Owls eventually ran out winners over the 3 ties, edging (can you 'edge` a game by 6 goals Rod? Ed.) the final tie 8-2, with goals by Coldwell, Rodley, Martin (5) and an own goal. All of the games were played in great spirit from both sides and many new relationships and links were formed from these events. The month of April also saw the provision at last begin an 11-14s Junior football education group from our pod base. At present we have 11 youngsters turning up each week and all seem very keen to learn much more about the beautiful game! This group were given a real baptism of fire on Sunday 15th June, when we took a squad of 6 to a mini tournament at Thomas Danby College. The competition was organised by the refugee council in Leeds and the all day event was aimed at highlighting their annual refugee week celebrations. The lads competed very well in their first away tournament together, but didn't manage to win any of their games. A great experience though and each player came away with a participation medal.

Early June saw our U17s interviewed by Norwegian journalist Benedikte Nes. Mrs Nes asked our young people questions based around how they became involved in the group and what kinds of sessions we run in an average meet up. The group then headed outdoors to compete in a very entertaining 'Lads v Guests' match at Fearnville. This 6 v 6 match was our 11th tie in almost 4 years, and again it ended in favour of the Guests squad at 4-1. Guests are now 3 games unbeaten in these 3 monthly games and now lead 6-5 on games! The guests squad included youth workers and FA qualified coaches such as Leon Walcott, Danu Lynch, Abdul Kuddus, Anthony Southern, Mohsin Ahmed and yours truly! Man of the matches for the Owls youths were Coldwell, Temple and Menchi. After the game I informed the players of some excellent news. We have received 2 very positive enquiries of sponsorship from PR companies, along with funding to employ 2 Leeds United Community coaches for 12 months from September 2008. This news was greeted with happy cheers and whistles, which was great to see after their earlier guests match defeat! Well done lads and keep up this great effort.

Our rather hectic, but exiting 3 month period ends on Sunday 29th June, when our U16s head to the St Nicholas annual 6-a-side gala tournament in North Gipton. Last year saw us reach the final here, only to lose out on sudden death penalties after extra time. We are hoping to go one better this time around, so watch this space to see how we do on the day!

Owls squad at St Nicholas gala; Menchi, Coldwell, Temple, Martin, Rodley and Islam.

To become involved with the Oakwood Owls 11-17s, please enquire via his Oakwood Owls website, or your details can be passed on by e-mailing leeds@vitalfootball.co.uk.

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Writer:LUFC1
Date:Friday June 27 2008
Time: 3:29PM

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