Broadstone Middle School’s under-13 girls side were boosted by a visit from England Ladies star Steph Houghton on Monday, ahead of their southern region final.
The 24-year-old visited the school, who are representing AFC Bournemouth in the npower League Girls Community Cup, to answer questions and carry out a training session before the girls travel to Milton Keynes.
Arsenal star Houghton appeared for England in the 2011 Ladies World Cup, before thrilling the nation at last year`s Olympics, scoring the winning goals against both New Zealand and Brazil.
She passed on her expertise to the side, who were selected as the Cherries representatives after they won the local tournament organised by AFC Bournemouth’s Community Sports Trust.
They then came up against seven other Football League clubs in the regional tournament at Aldershot, defeating the hosts 3-0 to be crowned winners.
If the girls are successful in the next round at Milton Keynes, they will earn themselves a place in the final – to be played at Wembley ahead of this year`s Johnstones Paint Trophy final.
Houghton said, “The session was really good – they are a great bunch of girls and I wish them all the luck in the tournament on Friday.
“There is a great prize – for the girls a chance to play at Wembley, which isn`t something that usually happens when you are in year seven at school!”
“When I was a girl, I didn`t have women footballers to look up to – I had David Beckham and Steven Gerrard – so for me it is nice to be able to come to a school like this and give the girls something to aspire to.”
Head of AFC Bournemouth`s Community Sports Trust, Steve Cuss said, “It was a massive boost for the girls that such a well-known and respected player has taken the time to visit and help them.
“I know how thrilled they were about the game and her visit, and hopefully she has passed on some key information to inspire them on to victory, and a well-deserved place in the final at Wembley.
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