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Albion Goals participants impress at European tournament

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Participants from one of Albion in the Community’s (AITC) inclusion projects visited Cologne to take part in an international football tournament.

A number of players from AITC’s Albion Goals sessions visited the German city to play in streetfootballworld’s Football 3 Respect competition alongside players from similar projects across Europe.

More than 100 young people from ten different countries took part in the football festival, which used football to promote values of fair play and tolerance.

Players were encouraged to set the rules of the tournament and extra points were awarded for acts of fair play, such as applauding goals scored by opposing teams.

AITC’s players – who were part of two mixed teams with players from elsewhere in Europe -performed brilliantly. One of the teams included AITC players won the tournament while the other squad collected the most fair play points.

For many of the AITC delegation, however, the trip was about more than just results on the pitch. Two of the young people were travelling abroad for the first time, and the entire group embraced the themes of the festival and the opportunity to mix with people from different parts of Europe and young refugees from around the world.

Transport to and from Heathrow Airport was kindly provided by City Cabs and Radio Cabs Brighton.

Mark Slide, who helps deliver Albion Goals for AITC and was among the group in Cologne, was certain it had been a trip to remember for the players from AITC.

He said: “They had an incredible time and the entire trip was the sort of thing that many of our players would not otherwise have the opportunity to do.

“I would like to thank our players for representing the charity so well on and off the pitch. Hopefully they will all have learnt something from the tournament and can now share that experience with their fellow Albion Goals players at our regular sessions.

“I would also like to thank the organisers of the tournament for inviting us to take part, and both City Cabs and Radio Cabs Brighton for providing free transport to and from the airport. The support we receive certainly is appreciated.”