FANS can watch an England international at the Trico Stadium early next month when Redditch United hosts the U18 Schools’ Centenary Shield international between England and Northern Ireland.
In conjunction with the English Schools’ Football Association (ESFA), the match will mark the 70th anniversary of the Worcestershire Schools’ Football Association.
The fixture takes place on Friday, April 5 (7pm) and fans can pay on the gate. Tickets are also available in advance by calling 01527 451487 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets are £5 for adults and £3 for children.
Prior to the game, six Redditch middle schools will compete in a schools’ competition which begins at 4pm and to which fans are welcome.
Redditch man and former Abbey High School teacher Paul Rickard, who was elected to the ESFA council in 1994, has been involved with schools’ football for 40 years and has played a key role in bringing the match to Redditch.
He said: “It’s a great privilege to be able to stage this fixture in Redditch and a lot of hard work has gone into it. We are hoping to have an attendance into four figures, ideally closer to 2,000, and we’re confident there’s going to be some excellent football played.
“All of the players are in full-time education. Some famous names have emerged from England schools’ football including Michael Owen and Chris Smalling and there is some real talent out there.
“Hopefully the people of Redditch and beyond will come and support England in their latest match in the round-robin competition involving the home nations and Republic of Ireland.”