Arrow ImageAcute, PICU and Rapid Response

Posted on Dec 13 2022 by Fiona Bailey

Just before England dropped out of the World Cup, St Andrew’s Healthcare made its own mark in the world of football by hosting a homegrown tournament.

The mental health charity recently hosted its first 11-aside community football tournament which brought together two other top teams from within the community.

They were the Bridge Project and the Northampton Town Football Club (NTFC) Community Trust’s Disability Programme for an afternoon of the beautiful game.  

St Andrew’s also provided two teams which consisted of both staff and patients from all divisions and services. In addition, two former patients who are now living in the community also made a comeback and played.

Ex-professional football player Russell Lewis, who made more than 300 appearances in the football league playing as a defender for Northampton Town, supported, helped organise and run the event.

He said: “It was great to once again bring together key community organisations and patients and unite them by playing football. We may not be out playing professionally in Qatar, but the boys on the pitch certainly gave it their all.

“I’m pleased to say the games were very competitive but played with great sportsmanship and team spirit. An enjoyable time for all.”

Around 80 people attended the game which was overseen by two experienced football league referee. .

The St Andrew’s teams finished in second and third place and the Bridge Project were victorious 

NTFC donated three bags of official training football strips, medals and trophies for all those who were involved.

Senior Occupational Therapist Craig Newman, who is based on Prichard ward, and helped organise the game, said: “It was a really thrilling tournament and everyone enjoyed themselves. The patients who played spoke about how they felt a huge sense of pride, accomplishment and personal achievement. Well done and thank you to everyone who was involved.”