ESFA National Finals

ESFA delights in completing 2019/20 season

Against all odds, 2019-20 National Champions are crowned at Lilleshall National Sports Centre

The English Schools’ Football Association (ESFA) is delighted to have completed the 2019/20 season for inter-school football from the 12 – 19 October at Lilleshall National Sports Centre.

The Association took the step to complete the National Cup competitions for 2019/20, rather than abandoning the season, once it was clear that there was a positive appetite from those schools remaining in the competitions to continue with fixtures from September 2020. The 21 finals were planned to take place at former England training ground, Lilleshall National Sports Centre in Shropshire and staff from both the ESFA and Lilleshall worked tirelessly to ensure the event could run as smoothly as possible, adapting plans to meet Government guidance and providing a safe environment for the matches to take place.

Due to Covid-19 regulations for hosting the event, spectators were not permitted at any of the matches, however each fixture was streamed live online via the ESFA’s YouTube channel, ESFA TV – with the videos, so far, reaching over 60,000 views and including live, interactive ‘player of the match’ votes, via the ESFA’s Twitter account (@SchoolsFootball). The live streams are now available to re-watch and match highlights should also soon be available for players, schools, parents, and football fans to relive some fantastic moments brought to us by finalists this season, as well as a ‘goal of the tournament’ vote, to be hosted on Twitter in November.

Lockdown restrictions in the UK ceased schools’ football activity back in March and there was uncertainty as to whether this season would be completed, or whether the loss of a season of schools’ football would be just another sad occurrence as a result of the ongoing global pandemic. However, thanks to the dedication of the ESFA and the support of participating schools across England, a large majority of the Schools’ Football season was able to be completed, crowning 13 schools National Champions and a further 30 Schools and teams joint National Champions – you can find all the fixture results, for those matches played or titles awarded in the table below.

Co-Op Academy Walkden v Ivybridge Community College in a English Schools Football Association Boys Under 15 Girls Schools Cup Final match at Lilleshall National Sports Centre on Tuesday 13th October 2020 (c) Garry Griffiths | ThreeFiveThree Photography

On the completion of so many National Finals already, despite the odds, Phil Harding, ESFA Chairman (19/20 – 20/21) said Our National Finals have again showcased all that is unique and special about schools’ football. Lifelong memories, with young people demonstrating that they can be competitive, considerate and truly enjoy their football. Our thanks to all of the staff involved, the parents and carers who support their sons and daughters in their sporting endeavours, the match officials, and the staff at Lilleshall NSC.”

Pete Harris from the Bishop Stortford High School in Lea Valley, London said: I wanted to thank [the ESFA] for organising the finals this year. It would have been easier to not have them, but I really appreciated the ESFA giving our students the opportunity to play, as it brought back a little bit of ‘normal’ playing a schools’ cup fixture. My students had a fantastic day and it has given a real buzz to the school over the past week!”

This news comes ahead of the last two National Finals for 2019/20 season to be played at Lilleshall National Sports Centre, which are due to take place on Saturday 31 October, featuring the U13 representative teams from Gateshead Schools’ FA and Croydon Schools’ FA and the U16 representative teams from Bedfordshire Schools’ FA and Staffordshire Schools’ FA. Both of these matches will also be streamed live with full commentary via www.youtube.com/esfatv. The U13 Inter Association Trophy final will kick off at 2pm with the U16 County Cup final kicking off at 3pm.

The ESFA is delighted to have been able to complete the 19/20 season and to provide hundreds of school children in England the opportunity to play in their respective National Finals, despite the unprecedented interruptions, stress and turmoil of 2020. Photo galleries from each National Final are available via 353 Photography .

Match Day Programme

You can view / download a copy of the match day programme covering 12 – 19 October here:

Results & Competition winners

Live matches

Monday 12 October 2020

ESFA U12 Elite PlayStation FC Schools’ CupSt Bede’s RC School & Byron College (East Durham)3   6V3   5Whitgift School (Croydon)   (penalties)
ESFA U14 PlayStation F.C. Small Schools’ CupRepton School (Derby)0V4Claremont School *(West Sussex)
*Claremont school disqualified after fielding an ineligible player, with the title being awarded to Reptonn School

Tuesday 13 October 2020

ESFA U12 PlayStation F.C. Small Schools’ CupSt Michael’s CE Middle School (Poole & East Dorset)1V2St Mary’s College (Sefton)
ESFA U15 PlayStation F.C. Small Schools’ CupBuckswood School (South East Dorset)3V1St Mary’s College (Sefton)
ESFA U15 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ CupIvybridge Community College (Plymouth)1

4
V    1   3Wade Deacon High School (Halton)   (penalties)
ESFA U15 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup for B TeamsWalkden High School (Salford)3V6Ivybridge Community College (Plymouth)

Wednesday 14 October 2020

ESFA U14 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ CupTurton School (Bolton)1V2The Bishop Stortford High School (Lea Valley)

Thursday 15 October 2020

ESFA U13 PlayStation F.C. Small Schools’ CupEwell Castle School (Kingston)1V5St Bede’s College (Manchester)
ESFA U18 Schools’ Cup FinalRepton School (Derby)3V0Wilson’s School (Sutton)

Friday 16 October 2020

ESFA U13 PlayStation F.C. Elite Schools’ CupSandwell Academy (Sandwell)0     10V0     11Shenfield High School (Chelmsford & Mid Essex)   (penalties)
ESFA U14 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup for GirlsHodgson Academy (Blackpool)5V4Shenfield High School (Chelmsford & Mid Essex)
ESFA U16 Small Schools’ CupLeAF Studio School (Bournemouth)1V7Brooke House College (South Leicestershire)

Monday 19 October 2020

ESFA U13 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ CupEmerson Park School (Havering)4V5St Peter’s Catholic School (Solihull)

Joint winners

ESFA Schools’ Cup Competitions

U18 B Team CupEverton Free School (Liverpool) & Hampton School (Richmond)
ESFA U16 Schools’ CupBrooke House College (South Leicestershire) & Hampton School (Richmond)
ESFA U16 Schools’ Cup for B TeamsSandbach School (Sandbach) & Hampton School (Richmond)  
ESFA U16 Elite Schools’ CupCardinal Heenan Catholic High School (Liverpool) & Whitgift School (Croydon)  
ESFA U15 PlayStation F.C. Elite Schools’ CupTorquay Boys’ Grammar School (Torbay) & Kepier School (Sunderland)  
ESFA U12 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ CupSt Francis Xavier College (Liverpool) & The Toynbee School (Eastleigh & Winchester)  
ESFA U14 PlayStation F.C. B Team Schools’ CupCardinal Heenan Catholic High School (Liverpool) & Kingsdale Foundation School (South London)
ESFA U15 PlayStation F.C. B Team Schools’ CupSt Bonaventure’s School (Newham) & Cardinal Heenan Catholic High School (Liverpool)
ESFA U14 PlayStation F.C. Elite Schools’ CupClaremont School (West Sussex) & Wright Robinson College (Manchester)  
ESFA U13 PlayStation F.C. Schools’ Cup for GirlsThe Cherwell School (Oxford) & Alder Grange School (Rossendale)
ESFA U18 Schools’ Cup for GirlsThomas Telford School (Telford & Wrekin) & Barking Abbey School (Barking & Dagenham)  

ESFA Representative Team Cup Competitions

ESFA U14 PlayStation F.C. Inter County Cup for GirlsLancashire Schools’ FA & Middlesex Schools’ FA
ESFA U16 Inter County Cup for GirlsLancashire Schools’ FA & Somerset Schools’ FA
ESFA U15 PlayStation F.C. Inter Association TrophyCroydon District Schools’ FA & Sefton District Schools’ FA
ESFA U18 Inter County CupGloucestershire County Schools’ FA & Staffordshire County Schools’ FA  
ESFA National Finals

U18 Inter County Cup – Joint National Champions Crowned

Gloucestershire County Schools’ FA and Staffordshire County Schools’ FA crowned National Champions in the 2019/20 U18 County Cup competition.

The English Schools’ FA has declared Gloucestershire County Schools’ FA and Staffordshire County Schools’ FA joint champions of the U18 Inter County Cup for Season 2019-2020.

The decision has been taken after Covid-19 prematurely ended the season and it was established that it would not be feasible for these teams to participate in this year’s National Final match.

Darren Alcock, ESFA National Competitions Manager said “Players of both Gloucestershire and Staffordshire Schools’ FA have worked incredibly hard to reach this English Schools’ FA Cup Final.  We are very pleased to have reached a resolution for this final which recognises the effort, skill and determination of those involved with both teams.  To be crowned a National Champion is an extremely prestigious honour, so we hope that the players, staff and communities will enjoy this accolade and we wish the players well in their future football endeavours.” 

Mark Culverhouse, Staffordshire U18 Team Manager said “As team manager, it has been an absolute pleasure to have worked with such a great squad of young men.  They have been excellent role models for schoolboy football.  This has been a tremendous season having reached the National Final as well as being crowned Midlands Champions.  It was clear from the start we had a special group as they developed a great team spirit right from the start.  We are disappointed we were unable to compete for the title of National Champions but understand the decision to award the accolade of joint champions to us and Gloucestershire.  The recent loss of John Appleby has been a huge loss to all involved with Staffordshire Schools’ FA and the wider footballing community and this achievement is a fitting tribute to his hard work and dedication.  We hope our U16’s can add the National Title to the growing list of Staffordshire’s titles in their upcoming final”