St Albans Disability shine in People's Cup
PUBLISHED: 10:31 18 May 2017 | UPDATED: 10:31 18 May 2017
St Albans Disability squad were impressive form as they finished in the FA People's Cup - and they are already planning on going even better in next year's competition.
The squad, which is based out of St Albans City Youth, battled through local and regional qualifying rounds to be one of only six teams, from an original 600-plus entries, to make the national finals, which this year were held in Birmingham.
They went undefeated in a five-game round-robin section, winning two and drawing three, including a 3-3 draw with eventual winners Exeter City.
Their 4-1 win over Swale Tigers was also streamed live on the Match of the Day website, attracting 71,000 views.
They eventually placed third in the group which set up a semi-final against South Tyneside Disability, who they had also drawn 3-3 with.
However, the team of Andrew Parsonage, Paul Slattery, Dennis Cranswick, Sean Ellingham, John Webster, Ben Kelly and Ciaran Woods just missed out on a place in the grand final with a defeat.
That said simply getting to the finals in the first place was a huge accomplishment and they are already looking forward to next year.
Striker Woods said: “I’ve really enjoyed my first ever experience of playing in The FA People’s Cup.
“I enjoyed playing against lots of different teams thoughout the competition but as a striker what I really enjoyed was scoring plenty of goals.
“That always makes me really happy and by doing that it helped the team get good results throughout the competition.
Goalkeeper Slattery said: “My favourite bit was obviously saving the penalty that got us through to the finals.
“All the other teams we met were really nice and I’m looking forward to seeing how far we can get next season.”
The disability section of St Albans City Youth was formed in 2005 to provide people in the St Albans district an opportunity to play football.
They now boast over 50 registered players across all age groups up to 45 years old, and with different disabilities and genders.
A spokemsan for the club said: “Our players benefit greatly from participating and training but also from the social opportunities playing sports brings.”