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Albion in the Community and American Express team up for free football event

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Albion in the Community (AITC) teamed up with American Express to hold a free football day for people with Down’s syndrome.

More than 40 participants attended the AITC event, which was held at the club’s American Express Elite Football Performance Centre in Lancing.

The event was broken into two parts – with a range of football activities in the morning and a tournament in the afternoon.

Coaches from AITC were supported by volunteers from American Express and the players were also treated to a visit from Albion mascot Gully.

The American Express funded football day has become an annual event and its popularity led to the launch of a regular session run by AITC for players with Down’s syndrome that takes place fortnightly at the club’s training ground.

Many of the players who now train together as Brighton & Hove Albion Down’s Syndrome FC (BHADSFC) took part in the day, with others trying the sport for the first time. Players from the BHADSFC squad’s counterparts at Charlton Athletic – the Charlton Upbeats – also travelled down from south London to join the fun.

There was also a Player of the Day award, with local player Kian Gurnhill chosen by AITC coaches to receive the prize.

Phil Broom, who oversaw the day and coaches BHADSFC, was delighted with how the event went.

He said: “It was a brilliant day and it was great to see so many people enjoying football.

“Our football day for people with Down’s syndrome is always incredibly popular and our thanks go to our friends at American Express, not only for funding the event but also for providing the fantastic volunteers that play a big part in making the day such a success.”

For more information on how to take part in AITC’s regular session for people with Down’s syndrome, email: