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England U18 Schoolboys’ matches to be broadcast live on the BBC!

The ESFA is pleased to announce that the 2022 Centenary Shield for under 18 Schoolboys’, will be broadcast across the BBC. SAFIB, the hosts of the Centenary Shield competition, have secured a broadcast deal with the BBC that will see teams from all the Home Nations and the Republic of Ireland play in the Centenary Shield in March and April 2022. Games will be shown live across BBC iPlayer, the BBC Sport app and Connected Red Button.

This new broadcast deal means that all four of the England U18 Schoolboys Centenary Shield fixtures will be broadcast live across the BBC’s digital platforms. This exciting new opportunity will help raise the profile of schools’ football whilst showcasing the commitment and abilities of all the players involved.

ESFA Chairman, Mark Hignett, commented: “The ESFA is delighted to announce that all of England’s U18 Centenary Shield fixtures in 2022 will be broadcast live, online by the BBC. 

Anyone that has represented their country at this level or who has watched as a spectator will testify to the quality of football as well as the extremely competitive nature of the games that viewers will be treated to in March and April.

All the players selected to wear the three lions will continue to combine their commitment to education with the pursuit of football at the highest level. The opportunity for their talent to be accessible to a television audience is long overdue and full deserved.

This is an exciting opportunity to raise the profile of schools’ football in its entirety and allows the U18 England Squad’s Centenary shield to be viewed and enjoyed by a new and broader audience. For those not able to get to the games in person, I urge you to tune in via the BBC to whom we are incredibly thankful for making this possible.”

England’s first match will be away to Northern Ireland on the 25th of March with the fixture being played at Portadown Football Club from 7pm. The Squad will then host Scotland at Spennymoor Town FC before traveling South to host the Republic of Ireland at Eastleigh FC on Friday 8th April. They will then round off their Centenary Shield campaign with a trip to Penybont FC to face the Welsh on Friday 13th April.

A full fixture schedule for the SAFIB Centenary Shield 2022 can be viewed below.

ESFA Internationals, featured

England U18 Schoolboys’- Official Squad Announcement

The ESFA have announced the 18 players chosen to represent the England U18 Schoolboys’ for the 2021-2022 season following the final Pro:Direct Trial

The ESFA concluded their search for the best schools’ footballers that England has to offer yesterday (Sunday 19th December) with the final England U18 Schoolboys’ Pro:Direct trial taking place at the Lilleshall National Sports Centre. The successful boys have progressed through a rigorous selection process from October until December to be finally selected to represent their country.

The players were first nominated by their county sides to attend regional trials that led to the construction of four regional squads, the North, Midlands, South East and South West. These squads then went head to head in step two of the trials process and formed the North and South squads that travelled to Lilleshall yesterday for the final stage of the process.

Making the final stage of the trials is a huge personal achievement for all the boys who attended and something they can be very proud of.

Mark Hignett, ESFA Chairman said “We are delighted to be able to name this year’s England U18 Schoolboys’ Squad today. It’s a fantastic achievement for these players to have made it through what is a tough trials process, to be able to go on and represent their School, District, County and their Country for this year’s International Season. On behalf of the English Schools’ FA, I would like to congratulate each and every selected boy on their achievement and also pass on my thanks to their parents for the commitment and support they have also shown. Finally, I would like to congratulate all the players that were selected to take part in this year’s trials process and wish them the very best for the rest of this season.”

A huge congratulations to the following boys:

Number Name County 
1Harvey KeoghHampshire 
2Niko Nemonen-MillarOxfordshire 
3Demico BurtonWest Midlands 
4Jack BeerlingKent 
5Ashton FoxNorfolk
6Hugh Cullum Suffolk 
7Freddie Legg Sussex 
8Jack Bates Sussex 
9Josh Stones West Yorkshire 
10Joe AdamsHampshire 
11Billie Clark Sussex 
12Joe Paradise Somerset 
14Tom Gruzewski Hampshire 
15Oscar Fletcher Cleveland 
16Alfie Dean North Yorkshire 
17Jasper Sheik Surrey 
18Bailey Hall Cheshire 
19Noah Carney Kent 

This final squad will go on to compete in some friendly matches in the New Year, including a game against the RAF. They will then be involved in some preparatory training before their competitive fixtures at the end of the season in the prestigious Centenary Shield.  

The ESFA would like to once more congratulate all the players that were put forward for England Schoolboys’ trials this season and wish those players that haven’t been selected the very best of luck with the rest of their season and footballing careers.