Following the success of the ESFA’s National Finals from the 2019/20 season, the Association have been running an online vote to highlight the ‘Goal of the Finals’
The vote, presented 16 of the best goals showcased during the recent National Finals, giving followers the opportunity to vote for their favourite. The quarter finals vote received over 1,500 votes, with the semi-final attracting over 4,500 thanks to some retweets and shares from some big names in the football and TV world.
After appealing to their own various football clubs and supporters, some of the nominees were able to drum up online support for their own campaigns from former ESFA PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup Ambassador, Rio Ferdinand, professional footballers, Declan Rice and Robert Snodgrass and TV presenter, Alex Brooker amongst others. The young players were delighted with the uptake their vote was getting across Twitter.
The Final vote, which is due to go live today at 1:00pm will be open until Friday 27 November, when the official Goal of the Finals 19/20 will be announced. For these young players to have had the chance to play their 2019/20 National Finals, despite the ongoing pandemic, was a true achievement for all of the schools involved – but to then have their efforts recognised and selected for this public vote is a great way to end what has, for many, been a difficult year.
Benat Mancisidor from St Bede’s College in Manchester edged his way into the final, winning his semi-final vote with 59%. Benat’s goal was taken from the U13 Small Schools’ Cup Final, where St Bede’s triumphed over Ewell Castle School from Kingston with a 5 – 1 win.
Riley Hargan from Emerson Park Academy in Havering, triumphed in the semi-final vote with 71%. Riley’s goal was taken from the U13 Schools’ Cup Final on 12 October, where Emerson Park lost out to St Peter’s Catholic School 4 – 5.
Both Benat and Riley have received backing via social media for their performances so far and, with a much shorter voting time for the final, the ESFA and its online supporters are keen to see who takes the win, having their goal recognised as the ‘Goal of the Finals 19/20’.