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New Hyde League a “brilliant concept” by the Jason Roberts Foundation

PUBLISHED: 07:00 15 January 2016

The Hyde League, in association with the Jason Roberts Foundation, began in Stonebridge on Saturday

The Hyde League, in association with the Jason Roberts Foundation, began in Stonebridge on Saturday

Archant

More than 500 people were in attendance at the opening ceremony of the Hyde League in Stonebridge on Saturday.

QPR served up a four-goal thriller with Crystal Palace in the opening fixture at the PavilionQPR served up a four-goal thriller with Crystal Palace in the opening fixture at the Pavilion

The league, which will also help offer employment and volunteering opportunities in various sectors of the game, is designed to bridge the gap between grassroots and academy/league football.

All of the teams taking part in the league were introduced to the crowd at the Pavilion, these including QPR in the Community Trust, and the Crystal Palace and Michael Bruce academy.

The opening game saw QPR take on Palace, with the Premier League outfit fighting back on two occasions to salvage a 2-2 draw late on.

In the first Under-16 match of the league the Jason Roberts Foundation lost out in a seven-goal thriller to Sports Strive Elite on Sunday, while the Urban Education Football Academy 16-18 age group lost 3-0 to the Colin Kazim-Richards Academy.

Sunday’s game of the day saw the Michael Bruce Academy get the better of the Nigel James equivalent in a hard-fought encounter.

Bruce, a scout for Premier League giants Arsenal, watched his side come out victorious by two goals to one in a high quality encounter.

Several scouts came on both Saturday and Sunday, casting an eye over the talent on show.

Brent MP Dawn Butler was also at the opening ceremony and gave her verdict on the new league, saying: “It’s a really good way to interact with the community.

“There’s obviously a big focus on football and developing players – hence why it is a development league.

“But it isn’t just about that. It’s about the stuff around the game too, be that the media, coaching, refereeing, commercial or physiotherapy.

“It gives a real drive and focus to the young people in the area. It’s a brilliant concept and I’m delighted that this has finally come about.

“It’s good for everyone, the youngsters and the older people too. Once the word spreads that this is happening, you’ll never get a shortage of people turning out in force for the league.

“It’s not just about Stonebridge, it’s about the whole of Brent.”

The league will continue on a fortnightly basis on Sundays at the JRF’s Pavilion base in Stonebridge.

For more information on the league, visit their website at www.JasonRobertsFoundation.com or email info@jasonrobertsfoundation.org

In addition to this, a new website will be launching this week, specifically aimed at the Hyde League.

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