Newcastle held the inaugural Newcastle United Foundation 1892 Cup yesterday at the Youth Academy and it featured 128 youngsters from eight local schools each with a boys’ and a girls’ team.
They all wore the new Newcastle home strip, which will not be on general sale until Friday – that’s how special the children are!
It was a real success and it was so funny when Rafa was walking over to the Academy and he was mobbed by the youngsters and you could here “it’s Rafa” many times in that Geordie dialect.
He was like the Pied Piper of Hamelin.
Rafa Benitez on his way to the tournament.
He was mobbed by the schoolchildren
Rafa was on hand to watch some of the games and along with Newcastle stars Paul Dummett, Jamaal Lascelles, Vurnon Anita and Aleksandar Mitrovic, handed out the awards to the winners.
Rafa signs some autographs
And then it’s some high fives
Watching from the sidelines – he just missed a goal
A small boy gets a tap on the head – has Rafa recognized a future star?
Walking over to the Youth Academy – it’s drizzling
The girls and boys grouped together yesterday
This is Throckley Primary School – what a team!
Here’s what Rafa has also said to the local press after the very successful tournament:
“We thought it would be a good idea to put football and the foundation together and bring the kids and the families here.”
“Everything has been really good.” “Also, we strengthened the link between the club and the city and the fans.”
“It was very positive for everyone.”
Here’s Rafa’s full interview with nufcTV but you need to have a subscription to watch it.
These are some terrific images from yesterday’s event – and a great idea to bring the club and the community much closer together.