Following the recent successes of our over more senior teams, we are pleased to report that Birmingham Walking Football club has established an over 40’s team for players who may not quite have quite reached full maturity.
The newly formed team managed by the legendary Ian Crampton played their first game against a distinguished and fully sober team from Redditch, called Trinity Old Boys. The match was tagged as a grudge match, due to most of the Redditch team being ‘literally tagged’ and the fact that Ian has been playing with the TOB team for over 20 years.
Ian has been promoting the intensity and skill level of walking football to the Redditch team for some time, however the players from Redditch who did own a TV set and had seen the Barclays advert assumed that walking football was ‘a load of tripe’
A match was arranged for the Brick Kiln site for Friday 3rd November and after several Parole officers gave the go ahead, 7 players from Redditch were escorted in a secured vehicle to play against 7 of Solihulls’ finest for bragging rights in the first official over 40’s walking football for the team. The Birmingham team consisted of: Ian Crampton, Paul Murtagh, Dave Castle, Martin Griffiths, Andy Norris (Capt), Alan Deakin and Stephen Taggart.
There was a cagey start to begin with, but after the cage was raised the Redditch players made their way onto the pitch in confident mood.
Birmingham started on the front foot with intricate passing causing Trinity problems and created several chances to open the scoring. Andy Norris came closest to scoring but was kept out by Leopold Tevlin III in his sponsored Jacamo goalkeeper outfit and walking boots ensemble.
The game was fairly well balanced for the first 5 minutes however slowly but surely the experience of the Birmingham team started to show as goals started to flow. In the end the Birmingham team ran out worthy 11-4 winners. A Norris x 4, I crampton x2, S Taggart x 2, P Murtagh x 2, A Deakin x 1.
An emotional and tearful Manager Ian Crampton choked back tears following the final whistle to comment: ““I’m honoured and thrilled to be asked to take on the role of England Manager its every boys dream!”
The over 40’s team are keen to secure matches against other over 40’s teams in the local area and promote new teams to form to continue the growth of walking football for a younger age group
“Being in the over 40’s group, we feel we are the academy players for the more traditional age sectors of walking football team…. If we can add to the numbers of teams in the area it would be great to set up a league format in much the same way as the other teams at Birmingham enjoy” said England Manager, Paul Murtagh