Whitley Bay school celebrates success at Premier League Primary Stars tournament

Young stars at a Whitley Bay school are celebrating after claiming second place at the Premier League Primary Start tournament.

By Joshua Wright
Tuesday, 14th June 2022, 3:33 pm
The Valley Gardens Middle School girls team stands proudly atop the platform.
The Valley Gardens Middle School girls team stands proudly atop the platform.

Around 7,000 children from 700 schools across the UK took part in the tournament, and the girls from Valley Gardens Middle School made it through to the final where they represented Newcastle United Football Club.

To make it to the competition, the Valley Gardens team qualified through the regional Newcastle round where they beat the competition from schools across Newcastle, Northumberland and Tyne and Wear to earn the right to be Newcastle United’s representatives at the finals.

Valley Garden’s team headed to Vicarage Road with their Newcastle United coaches Adam and Paul and their school coach Jamie Murphy, where they beat teams from Liverpool Norwich City and Chelsea and drew with Everton to make it into the semi-finals where they secured their place in the final to face Brentford FC.

The girls also received messages of support from local football hero Alan Shearer and players from Newcastle United’s women’s team.

Jaime Murphy, the girls football coach at Valley Garden Middle School, said: “We at Valley Gardens took part in this amazing opportunity and were runners up out of 7,000 children from around 700 other schools in the UK.

"I am extremely proud of the team.”

Cllr Steven Phillips, cabinet member for children, young people and learning at North Tyneside Council, said: “It’s brilliant to see a passionate team of young girls representing North Tyneside at such a fantastic football tournament, and even better for them to bring home the runners up medal.

“I’d like to say a big thank you to Newcastle United Football Club and Newcastle United Foundation for supporting the team and their amazing coach to attend the stadium and compete on a national level.”

Adam Herczeg, Primary Area Coordinator at Newcastle United Foundation, said: “The Premier League Primary Stars finals is one of the highlights of our Primary Stars programmes and we were delighted that Valley Gardens could represent us at Vicarage Road this year.

“The girls gave a great account of themselves and were unfortunate to get beaten in the final by a single goal.

"They should be incredibly proud of their achievements representing Newcastle United and Newcastle United Foundation.”