Tournament's return brings huge joy to Welwyn Garden City Youth Football Club

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children. - Credit: WELWYN GARDEN CITY YOUTH FC

A first tournament since 2019 brought thousands of young footballers to Welwyn Garden City Youth Football Club.

The event, held at the club's home ground at Ridgeway Academy, was the first they had been able to put on following the pandemic and its return brought a total of 141 teams and 1,300 players aged between six and 12 over the two days.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children. - Credit: WELWYN GARDEN CITY YOUTH FC

Chairman Kevin Murphy said: "After the frustrations of the COVID lockdowns, we were excited to be able to run a tournament after an absence of two years.

"With the cost of training facilities increasing, the funds generated from such events are vital for the survival of youth football clubs.

"It was the first time that we have held our tournament at Ridgeway and we were delighted that the event went so well.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children. - Credit: WELWYN GARDEN CITY YOUTH FC

"This was partly due to the excellent partnership that we have with the school itself, who helped to facilitate the tournament.

"The quality of the football on show was excellent, as was the good sportsmanship shown by the players, coaches and spectators.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children.

Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament attracted more than 1,000 children. - Credit: WELWYN GARDEN CITY YOUTH FC

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"The weather was great over the weekend and the BBQ and ice cream van were busy all day.

"We encountered very few issues and the feedback we received was extremely positive.

Action from Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament at Ridgeway Academy.

Action from Welwyn Garden City Youth's football tournament at Ridgeway Academy. - Credit: WELWYN GARDEN CITY YOUTH FC

"Our club was only founded in 2012 with an initial two teams and 14 players and now, 10 years later, we have 44 teams and over 540 players.

"It's testament to the great work of our committee and volunteers that we are able to put on an event of such size and we look forward to welcoming the teams back again in 2023."