This week, Madejski Stadium opened its doors to a whole host of young boys and girls who made the Finals of the PlayStation Schools Cup...
The PlayStation Schools’ Cup is an exciting grassroots football partnership between PlayStation and the English Schools’ Football Association (ESFA).
Tournaments are open to girls and boys throughout England within the U12, U13, U14 and U15 age categories - and the climax of each tournament has been staged on Madejski Stadium's hallowed turf across three busy days this week!
The ESFA is the governing body of schools’ football in England. It is responsible for the running and development of schools’ competitions and festivals for boys and girls at Primary and Secondary school age. Previous ESFA grassroots tournaments have helped nurture stars such as Ryan Giggs, Michael Owen, Phil Neville, Jermain Defoe, Chris Smalling, Nicky Butt, Joe Cole and Wes Brown.
Over 2,000 schools and 100,000 children will now benefit from the PlayStation Schools’ Cup programme every year - and every school involved was issued with a PlayStation Schools’ Cup matchday football.
The PlayStation Schools’ Cup will not just benefit the leading young footballers in the country – the competition is open to children of all abilities with `B team’ and `Small School Trophy’ tournaments also an integral part of PlayStation’s support of grassroots football.
Games were commentated on by Clive Tyldesley and John Scales and multi-angle live streams of the finals were broadcast via YouTube throughout the festival. And there were some guest appearances from stars of the Premier League too - Ainsley Maitland-Niles, James Ward-Prowse, Dwight Gayle and Steph Houghton all lent their support to the sides taking part!
Here are a few of the best photos from a three day footballing extravaganza at the home of the Royals...