After the success of last year in reaching the U12 National Cup Final, the U13 team has really kicked on this season. With so many students already playing and with more Year 7s joining the set up we have expanded to running a B team and have had 30 students representing the school in this age group at some point this season. This B team have proven to be very handy themselves and have progressed through four rounds of the County Cup to reach the final after the Easter holidays. They will likely play the school A team in an unprecedented situation of an all Thorpe final!
With the relegation of Norwich City FC last year the U13 girls had the unique opportunity to play in the EFL Girls’ Cup this season. After successfully winning the Norwich tournament the 6 aside squad travelled to Peterborough for the regional competition, playing as Norwich City themselves. The girls were successful again going undefeated on the day and winning through to the South of England Finals in Swindon. With a chance to play at Wembley on the line for the winners the standard was high but our girls started with two wins and guaranteed a spot in the the days final against the champions from last season. They were amazing in the final and completely swarmed the team from Wimbledon but could not find that winning goal, only to be caught on the break and to finish the day with heartbreak rather than glory.
In full sided play the A team have gone from strength to strength this season and made serene progress through County and National Cup Rounds. They again reached the ‘live draw’ element of the National Cup Quarter Finals but the draw threw up a twist, a repeat of last year’s Final again the reigning champions Shenfield. The girls took their preparation really seriously, studying last year’s final video, putting in the hours on the training pitch and the results were there as they held Shenfield at bay for most of the game in a see-saw battle of two really good teams. Unfortunately, a bit of individual class was enough to seal the win in the second half for the opposition but the team could reflect back on how much they have closed the gap and see a clear path to success in future seasons when the big matches come around.
At this point the focus now switches to Holland and a return to International Football Tours after a five year break. With two U13 teams and an U15 team going we look forward to seeing how they fair over the Easter holidays and hopefully have U13, U14 and U16 County Finals to look forward to when we return.