Whitehaven AFC under-11s boys won a prestigious football competition at the home of the England national football teams on a day to remember for the club.

The boys visited St George’s Park, the home of the England national football teams, to play in the prestigious ESF Festival of Football Grand Finale day.

They had qualified for the competition by winning a tournament at Skegness in May.

The competition pitted they against four other tournament winners: Alvechurch FC from Birmingham; Billericay Town Colts; Welling United; and Droylsden FC in a round-robin tournament to crown the champions.

The opening game saw them face Alvechurch but, despite dominating the game for periods, they couldn’t find the back of the net and the game ended goalless.

Whitehaven took an early lead in the second game, against last season’s Grand Finale winners Billericay Town Colts, thanks to a great strike from Rowan Johnstone.

They were pegged back on the stroke of half-time and although both teams had chances to win it the game finished 1-1 and Whitehaven were left needing maximum points from their final two games.

Up against Welling they put in an outstanding team performance and got their rewards with striker Charlie Hodgson pouncing on a loose ball from a corner to give them a deserved 1-0 win.

They attacked from the off but couldn’t break down a resolute Droylsden defence and went in at half-time level.

Alex Kitchen that got the decisive second-half goal, finishing calmly under the keeper to give Whitehaven the lead, and although Droylsden threw everything at the opposition the West Cumbrians defended heroically to hold out for the win and finish top of the league.

The boys were then presented with their awards and had the opportunity to take in the facilities on show.

Lead coach Paul Smith said: “With the right players, the right parents and the right coaches, anything is possible.”