This Sunday could be a momentous day for both Leyton Orient and Chase Lane Primary School in Chingford, as they will be playing at Wembley Stadium on the same afternoon; the O’s taking on Rotherham in the League One Play Off final whilst the Year 6 school team is representing the O’s in the final of the Football League Kids Cup.
The Football League Kids Cup is a national 6-a-side under 11’s competition that provides schools with the chance to represent their local Football League club and get the chance to play in the final at Wembley Stadium.
The finalists’ prize also includes an overnight stay in a local hotel, the Wembley Stadium tour and a brand new football kit!
Over 20,000 school children from 2,500 schools take part in the tournament each year, so for our local school Chase Lane to reach the final, it is a huge achievement. And the odds of both teams reaching their respective finals are extremely unlikely so the club is hoping for a fantastic double celebration on Sunday!
Last Tuesday, a friendly match was organized against Aldersbrook school from Redbridge on the SCORE 3G pitch before Orient’s semi-final second-leg against Peterborough and the children were hoping that the O’s also reached their final.
One Chase Lane pupil and member of the squad said, “I am really excited because it is a once in a lifetime opportunity. To play at Wembley on the same day as Orient would be so cool!”
Tyrone Hercules, Chase Lane team coach, said, “We are very excited and very proud that our team have won the southern region qualifier and we’re now playing the northern region representatives, Notts County, at Wembley. The children are very excited and we cannot wait to play on the play-off final day and hopefully get crowned one of the best Year 6 teams in the country.
“To play at Wembley is great, but to play with the Leyton Orient team there on the same day for their final would be absolutely amazing; we are very proud.”
Another member of the team said, “It is an honour to play at Wembley and represent Orient. I am proud of our team because we have worked our hardest.”
Howard Gould, Community Liaison Officer, said, “Chase Lane, like the O’s, deserve their place at Wembley. They had to come through their local qualifiers and then travel to Swindon for the regional heats where determination and teamwork proved to be a successful combination and culminating in this special day. I’m not sure what the odds are having both teams at Wembley on the same day but I’m sure it won’t happen very often! It’s a fantastic achievement and what a brilliant double it would be if both teams can come out winners although the experience itself will remain long in the memory.
“It would be great to have some support from the O’s fans that may be in the stadium early, soaking up some of the atmosphere. The kick-off is at 1.20pm and it would be wonderful if the boys could hear the sound of ‘Ori-Ori-Ori-Ori-Orient’ in the background!”