After the high of winning their first three tournaments in a row, followed by the low of playing below par in the next two, the U9s went into their sixth and final tournament at Halliford Colts on Saturday July 11th with a degree of trepidation. The team quickly got back to winning ways, topping their group with four straight wins and scoring 11 unanswered goals. The quarter final was a close call, with the U9s doing just enough to progress. The semi took the team into unchartered territory, a penalty shoot out. However, they kept their cool and were rewarded with a place in the final against the hosts. The teams couldn't be separated after extra time, forcing the tie to be decided by penalties once more. Both teams took their penalties well, but the BBFC U9s eventually prevailed. Cue celebrations! A special mention goes to Henry Jefferson, a forward by trade, who took over goalkeeping duties in the absence of the regular No.1. Not only did Henry keep a clean sheet throughout the tournament, he pulled off a string penalty saves to secure the U9s' fourth tournament win this summer.
The sun was blazing on a glorious Friday night at the 2015 Carter Jonas BBFC Presentation Evening on July 10th. Players, parents, families and friends from all of the club's seventeen teams gathered at Trinity Fields for the annual awards evening when the club comes together to celebrate the achievements of all of our teams. It's been another great season for both the senior section, Balham FC and youth section, Balham Blazers FC. Congratulations to all the individual club award winners and many thanks to those who have helped behind the scenes from pre season back last August to now in July. Here's to another successful season in 2015-16, when the aim of the club, as ever, will be to try and bring a bit of Barcelona to Balham.
Individual Club Award Winners:
Carter Jonas Training Trophy Winners:
U8s - Ellis Kennedy-Nunez • U9s - Maxwell Emmery • U10 Colts - Isaac Jackson • U10 Eagles - Jack Hedges • U11s - Abu Diabate • U12 Colts - Kian Hill • U12 Eagles - Jack Redmond • U12 Youth - Morgan Coward • U13 Colts - Taryn Vancooten • U13 Eagles - Tom Appleton • U14 Colts - Arya Dashtabady • U14 Eagles - Tom Stephens • U16s - Arthur Fordham • U17s - Joe Ostrowski • Youth Team - Jamal Bartley • Panthers - Mary Dawson • First Team - Harry Herbert
Carter Jonas Players Player Of The Year Winners:
U8s - William Haspel • U9s - Noah Antoniades & Cameron Kerr • U10 Colts - Alfred Johnson • U10 Eagles - Sebastian Hunt • U11s - Joe Taylor • U12 Colts - Sonny Nicoll • U12 Eagles - Tom Lees • U12 Youth - Paulo Gagnier • U13 Colts - Jack Layzell • U13 Eagles - Luke Knight • U14 Colts - Tiannie Wilson • U14 Eagles - Sam Arbuckle & Marshall Travers-Elwin • U16s - Seth Keyser • U17s - Max Barbour & Arsen Ujkaj • Youth Team - Jamal Bartley • Panthers - Emillie James • First Team - Jamal Bartley
Carter Jonas Special Achievement Award Winners:
Ollie Archard, Lewis Mitchell, Ibrahim Olutade
Congratulations to Youth team centre forward, Ibrahim Olutade, who won the Southern Youth League Top Goalscorer Award for 2014-15, following in the footsteps of Eddie Luchford, who won it the previous season. Ibrahim was simply a goal machine for three Balham teams. He scored 35 for the Youth team, 43 for the U17s in their treble winning campaign and 2 for the First team, to make a staggering total of 80 goals in one season.
Sunday's weather didn't dampen the U10 Eagles spirits at Furngate this weekend. They came out of the blocks raring to go and won all 5 of their group games convincingly and without conceding a single goal. They quickly dispatched their quarter final opponents and waited to see who their semi final opponents would be. Predictably, as last season, it was the U10 Colts, predictably there was nothing between the teams and predictably it all came down to penalties. This year, though, the Eagles made it through to the final, a penalty save from Seb Hunt being the difference. In the final they were to meet the home team, Furngate FC. The boys had been magnificent from start to finish and managed to keep their composure after they conceded their first goal of the day and went behind. They kept their heads, kept playing their game and it wasn't long before Max Nwosu struck the equaliser and not long again before Jack Appleton slotted home the decisive goal from a Jacob Miller cross. It was nothing less than they deserved and a fitting way for Jonah Cahusac, captain for the day, who is moving out of London, to end his tenure at the club. The Magnificent 8 at Furngate were: Jack Appleton, Jonah Cahusac, Jack Hedges, Seb Hunt, Jacob Miller, Max Nwosu, Roddy Simpson and Ben Smith.
Congratulations to the U13 Colts who put in a fine performance to win the Furngate Tournament on Saturday July 4th. 17 goals scored and none conceded was their overall tally as they ruthlessly marched through the group stage and knockouts all the way to the final. Although they dominated that game too the winning goal eluded them and as such it went to penalties. Thankfully the Colts kept their nerve to win 6-5 and finish an excellent season on a high.
Our U8s, who are in sensational form, made it 7 wins from 7 games for the second weekend and tournament in a row at Furngate on Saturday July 4th. This time, unlike at Kingstoinian, the tournament was competitive and Balham's 7 wins, scoring 24 goals whilst conceding 0, meant they topped their group and went through to the semi finals. Unfortunately though a clerical error meant that the competition was aborted at this stage and the 8s were denied the opportunity to make it 8 out of 8 or even, quite possibly, 9 out of 9.
Our U8s had an excellent time at their second ever tournament at Kingstonian FC on Saturday June 27th. A busy morning saw them play seven games in the friendly competition, which has no knockout stages. The team played some lovely pass and move football and scored a hatful of goals, winning all seven games played. They also kept a clean sheet throughout.
It was good to see former BBFC Coach, James Scott, back in the fold at the Guildford Tournament on Sunday June 28th. With this season's U12 Eagles Coaches unavailable, James very kindly stepped in at the last minute. As might be expected he did an excellent job taking the Eagles through the group stage and knockouts, playing some great football, all the way to the final, where they unfortunately ran out of steam and were narrowly beaten. The tournament also marked the last games in Balham colours for BBFC stalwarts, Luke Cahusac, Tom Lees, James Myres and Joe Whittaker, all of whom, along with Teddy Watling, who is also regrettably having to leave, have been brilliant players for BBFC. Our two U14 teams, who were at Guildford on the same day, almost made it an all Balham final, with both making the semis however, one bit the dust there and the other finished runners up.
The U10 Eagles opened their tournament account this summer with a win at Elm Grove on Saturday 20th June. The boys finished top of their group, unbeaten and without conceding a goal to go straight through to the semi finals. The semi was a tight game and all square at 0-0 after normal time. A goal in the second half of extra time from Jack Appleton saw the boys through to the final against Kingston. 10 minutes of normal time and a further 6 minutes of extra time couldn’t separate the teams so it was down to penalties to decide the winner. It was a very tense affair, one that gave Seb Hunt the chance to shine, saving 3 of Kingston’s 5 penalties to crown the Eagles as victors. A fine team performance from all the boys on the day, displaying the Balham ethos of playing out from the back from beginning to end. Well done all! Jack Appleton, Jonah Cahusac, Jack Hedges, Seb Hunt, Fabian Hurst, Jacob Miller, Roddy Simpson, Matt Wallf.
Belated congratulations to both our Under 12 and Under 13 Colts who finished as runners up in their respective divisions. The Under 12s, coached and managed by Dave Coles, were runners up in the C division in their first season in the Tandridge League, having moved from the LCSYFL. The Under 13 Colts, coached and managed by JR Burgess and Lee Cooper, were runners up in the A division and were only pipped to the League Championship title on the very last day of the season. They were also League Cup runners up and London Cup semi finalists.
On Sunday June 21st the U9s went in to their third tournament of the year at Meadow Sports FC in Woking, having won their previous two. Winning a third consecutive tournament was going to be tough, but improving on the recent records at tournaments was surely going to be a step too far. At Sandhurst they had won all of their games on the way to lifting the trophy and then at Bourne End they went one better; despite a couple of draws, they had won the cup without conceding a goal. The U9s clearly like a challenge and at Meadow Sports they improved again. The boys eased their way through the group stage by winning all six of their games, scoring 23 unanswered goals. The semi-final was a tense affair with the U9s hanging on to a slender 1-0 lead for most of the game, against tough opposition. The final itself was less of a contest, with the U9s scoring early on before finishing up 6-0 winners. Winning all eight games, scoring 30 goals and keeping a clean sheet is a record that speaks for itself.
The BBFC U14s won a pulsating victory at the highly rated and well organised Elm Grove Colts FC tournament on Saturday June 20th. Managed by Phil James, U14 Colts manager, the squad of Kamal, Sam, Fred, Tiannie, Anthony and Danny played passing football at a dizzying pace and tackled like lions to protect Kamal in goal. Having qualified from the group stage, a 4-0 quarter final win set up a return match against the home club's very strong, talented A team who had narrowly beaten our boys earlier in the day. The home win they expected didn't materialise, though, as goals from Sam, Tiannie and Fred saw Balham through to the final 3-0. Not the first team to find it impossible to live with the Blazers' all action running and tackling or to get past the rock solid pairing at the back of Anthony and Kamal. The final was against the last remaining Elm Grove side and it turned inside a minute in the first half when Kamal made a great save with his feet in a 1 on 1 and, from the rebound the Blazers broke at lightning speed to set up Fred to put us into the lead. Superb defence, lead by Anthony, and great work by the rest of the squad kept the score at 1-0 until the last second when the team's hard work paid off, forcing a mix up between defender and goalie, and leaving Tiannie free to tap the ball into an empty net. 2-0 the final score.
It was the turn of the Under 12 and Under 13 Eagles teams’ to nominate their winners for the Jack Petchey Achievement Award.
For the Under 12 Eagles James Myres picked up the award. Coach James Lacey remarked “Congratulations to James who is a more than a well deserved winner of the Jack Petchey award. James never gives less than 100% in training, never complains when he is asked to do what's right for the team and on top of that, he's technically a brilliant player! He's a credit to Balham and we're fortunate that James is part of the club. I'm glad he's been recognised by his teammates as he probably doesn't get the credit he deserves as part of a talented squad”
For the Under 13 Eagles it was a close run vote but Christopher Kleczkowski was the eventual winner. On presenting Christopher with his award team manager Darran O’Grady said “Christopher has been voted by his peers due to his vast improvement and commitment over the last season 2014/15. Although Chris is not the most technically gifted with the ball at his feet, he has become an integral part of the Balham Blazers Eagles U13 Team. His hard work and honesty on and off the pitch, combined with his desire to better himself is what has prompted the team to vote him as the most improved player this season”. Christopher and his team are hoping to spend the £200 that they receive for the award on a round of footgolf.
Congratulations to both James and Christopher, worthy winners I'm sure you'll all agree.
Pictured is Under 12 Eagles James Myres receiving his award from BBFC General Manager Greg Cruttwell and Christopher Kleczkowski pictured with the Under 13 Eagles team and coach Darran O’Grady.
Our Bursary Fund offers full or part bursaries to players selected to play for the club who can't afford all or part of the fees. To keep funding this scheme as the club grows we invite parents and friends of the club, in a position to do so, to support us by contributing donations to the Bursary Fund.
Please give if you can - this is an amazing way to give a child the joy of developing their football skills and being part of a team within a thriving club. Any donations are extremely generous and very much welcomed by the club and our Bursary recipients.
The ideal time to contribute is at our annual registration days on Wednesday 1st July, 6pm-8pm and Sunday 12th July, 10am-12pm at Chestnut Grove School.
If you have been selected to play for the club and would like to apply for Bursary funding please contact the club: email@example.com
On Saturday 6th June the Balham Blazers U9s made it two tournaments out of two, after winning in style at Bourne mEnd. It was always going to be difficult to better their recent triumph at Sandhurst, but somehow they managed to do just that. Again the U9s went unbeaten, but this time around they won the competition without conceding a single goal. After three wins and two draws in the group stage the U9s won a tense semi-final, just as it looked like it might go to penalties. With the trophy in sight the U9s took an early lead in the final, before shutting up shop. Cue celebrations for the second time in a matter of weeks.
Many congratulations to budding soccer starlet, Abdullah Javiad, from the U10 Colts, who on May 25th at Chelsea's Cobham Training Ground won the Asian Star 2015 Football Competition. Abdullah, who was competing in the U10 category was tested on speed, agility, skills and range of passing. Despite stiff competition, with over 300 children having entered, Abdullah won the day and as a result received a framed, signed, shirt from Chelsea star, Oscar and a trophy from former Chelsea Norwegian International, Tore Andre Flo.
Congratulations to the BBFC U11s who won the 16 team Old Isleworthians Tournament in changeable weather on Sunday May 31st. Having emerged as group stage table toppers, following two wins and a draw, they needed a penalty shoot out to win their quarter final before triumphing 1-0 in both the semi final and final. Dan Gardner was outstanding in goal throughout the tournament, whilst the rest of the squad, Abu, Aidan, Asher, Daniel, Eddie, Finn, Stefan and skipper, Joe Taylor, took care of business in front of him.
U8 Coaches, Alfie Cruttwell and Theo Marks, have sent this picture from Medellin in Colombia where they went to see Atletico Nacional play Cacuta in the Colombian equivalent of the Premier League. Both Alfie and Theo, who are due back in England in June at the end of their post university gap year travels, have sampled life in Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru before entering the homeland of Valderrama, Rincon, Rodriguez and Falcao.
We are delighted to announce that the Balham FC Youth team have been confirmed as 2014-15 Southern Youth League Champions. Having won the Central Division of the SYL, a draw against Met Police, winners of the West Division and a win against Loxwood, winners of the South Division, proved enough for Balham to win the League Championship Play Offs. This is a fantastic achievement and needless to say the club is very proud of all those involved.
We are delighted to announce that the Balham FC First team were not only top scorers in the SEIFL but also won the Sportsmanship Trophy.
We are delighted to announce that Balham FC have signed a ground share agreement with Cobham FC from the Combined Counties League. Both the Balham FC First team and Youth team will be resident at Cobham for the 2015-16 season and beyond. The First team will play on Saturdays in the SEIFL and the Youth team will play on Thursdays in the SYL.
The Youth team's league and cup campaign finally came to an end on Friday May 22nd with semi final defeat in the SYL Invitational Plate. A superb season has seen our U18s win the Central Division of the SYL, reach the League Cup Final, where we were narrowly beaten by Met Police and beat Loxwood 4-3 and draw 1-1 with Met Police in the SYL Championship Play Offs. The big question, with Loxwood still to play Met Police, is will that be enough to see Balham crowned as Southern Youth League Champions?.
The Balham Blazers U14s’ high profile in Europe as a result of their time spent hobnobbing with the likes of Napoli, AC Milan and Inter Milan in Feb 2014 paid dividends in a request from the fine people at Sportfreunde Troisdorf in Germany for a friendly on Friday May 15th. On their previous visit to London our German guests had played at Craven Cottage, where they were beaten by Fulham’s Academy, and then beat Charlton FC’s Academy the following day. We knew that our boys were going to have to be n their mettle to come out of this game with a result. The game was played in an excellent spirit on the 4G pitch at Tooting & Mitcham and, far from feeling tired after a hard week at school, the Eagles ran out handsome winners by a score of 8-0. Standout efforts from Gus, who could have had a hatrick, Sam, with a fine left foot finish from outside the box and a penalty from goalie Kamal were the pick of the bunch. Afterwards we invited our guests for pizza where the competition was much more even and the results were declared delicious and a draw. Huge thanks to Joachim, who organised everything for our opposition.
Many thanks to Tony Hurrell and everyone at the Wibbandune (home of Colliers Wood Utd) for their help and support over the last five years. Our Youth team started playing there when they we formed them in 2010-11 and our First team have played there since they were launched in 2011-12. We will miss everyone in the clubhouse but most of all we will miss King Henry (pictured above) who makes the finest cup of tea on the A3 Southbound.
Another brilliant Balham FC season concluded on Saturday April 25th with a resounding 5-1 win against Virginia Water. Following three promotions in a row since the First team was formed in 2011-12 we have finished in a promotion position yet again. Frustratingly however the club, which cannot continue to play at the Wibbandune, home of Colliers Wood Utd, cannot be promoted for a fourth consecutive time as we do not meet the facility requirements for the Combined Counties League. These state that clubs are not allowed to secure a new ground share in order to seek promotion. With a move to Cobham FC for next season on the cards however should we finish in a promotion position again we will be eligible to climb the football league ladder to Step 6.
Many congratulations to Balham's very own va va voom number nine, Jerome Boncoeur, who, in our first season in the SEIFL, finished as top goal scorer, hitting the back of the net 19 times.
Jack Appleton, Jonah Cahusac, Seb Hunt and Roddy Simpson of the U10 Eagles proudly represented Wandsworth on Thursday March 28th in a Chelsea tournament under the management of their Balham Blazers Coach, Richard Siaw. The team did incredibly well against other local boroughs playing some fantastic football throughout. They reached the final where only a wonder goal that not even Seb ‘The Cat’ Hunt could save, was the difference. 2-1 was the final result but, lots to be proud of.
The BBFC U9s kicked off the summer football tournament season in style at Sandhurst Town on Saturday May 9th. 32 teams entered the initial group stage, which the U9s sailed through with a 100% record - scoring seven unanswered goals. The boys improved in the second group stage, winning all three games again while scoring 12 unanswered goals. Their reward was a place in the semi finals, while their style of football was drawing plenty of praise from the touchline.
The U9s took an early lead in the semis, but were pegged back when they conceded their first goal of the tournament. Heads didn’t drop and the winner came minutes from the end to book a place in the final. Any cup final nerves were settled within seconds of the start, with the U9s scoring directly from the kick off. The U9s added another goal before seeing the game out 2-0. Cue celebrations!
Many congratulations to the BBFC U11s who, in their first season in the Tandridge League, having switched from the LCSYFL, have finished runners up in the B Division. Their spot in second place and promotion to the A Division is assured despite their still being one match to play. The squad, which is a blend of new players and old, have done excellently under the leadership of new coach Jordan Greaves and can look forward next season to playing at the highest level in the TL.
Congratulations to the Balham FC Youth team who, following a comprehensive 5-1 semi final win away to Horley Town on Wednesday April 15th, are through to the Southern Youth League Cup Final. Their opponents on Thursday May 7th will be Metropolitan Police FC. The final will be played at Sutton United F.C. Borough Sports Ground, Gander Green Lane, Sutton, Surrey, SM1 2EY. Admission Prices: Adults £5.00 Concessions/Juniors £3.00 Programmes £1.00.
The BBFC U13 Colts played their hearts out in a very tight Tandridge League Cup Final at Chipstead FC on Sunday April 19th. The game against Melwood, who are challenging with the Colts for the TL A Division title, was dominated by two excellently marshalled defences and goal scoring opportunities were kept to a minimum. The two decisive goals for Melwood came in the second half. Despite valiant efforts from Balham, who weren't quite as dynamic as usual going forward, on this occasion it wasn't to be and instead of lifting the cup, the team had to settle for very well earned runners up trophies.
BBFC U9 player, Cameron Kerr, was on fire in a 10-2 victory against Clapham Rangers Colts on Saturday April 18th, netting an incredibly impressive eight times. Cameron, who owes a big thank you to those who assisted his goal rush, also found time to miss a penalty.
We are oh so very near, a bench away in fact, from seeing the first BBFC player appear in the Premier League. Aaron Mitchell was on the bench for QPR at the away game against Aston Villa on Tuesday April 7th and for the home game to Chelsea on Sunday April 12th. Aaron, who is still very much a part of the coaching set up at BBFC has done fantastically well to get this close. It's surely only a matter of time before manager, Chris Ramsey, lets him off the leash and makes history for BBFC.
Congratulations to the Balham FC Youth Team who, for the first time, have won the Southern Youth League Central Division. This means they are into the play offs for the overall Southern Youth League Championship with the winners of the West and South Divisions. Balham are also through to the semi finals of the SYL Challenge Cup and are still in the SYL Invitational Plate, at the group stage. Come on you Balham!
The U12 Eagles received the unusual request to host a friendly match against a team touring from the US, a request we were more than happy to accept for our Atlantic cousins. Scarsdale, from New York, and based in the Westchester Youth Soccer League, had embarked on an exciting trip across the pond to see the sights of London and play a few friendly matches against some local opposition. The match was hosted at the wonderful Whyteleafe Astro Soccer, which boasts an excellent 3G field, and accompanied by a post match buffet. Come game day, the sun had popped it's hat on, much to coach James Lacey's dismay and his rather thin coverage on top of his head. The match was played in great spirits, with Scarsdale showing why they had been so successful back on their home turf. The players on both teams were extremely respectful to each other and acted as superb ambassadors of their respective clubs. The game finished with a penalty shootout, where some players used the opportunity to showboat (not always successfully!), followed by much needed food and drink after the match.
A big thank you to Simon Baines, the coach of Scarsdale, who obviously likes his teams to play the game in the right way. Also a big thank you to the parents of Scarsdale, who were very friendly and went out of their way to chat to us. Lastly, a thank you to John & Toby of ECE Travel, who a) helped immensely in making this game happen in the first place and b) made the day fun and a thank you to Whyteleafe for the superb pitch facilities and hospitality after the game.
We hope to see Scarsdale again in the future, maybe in the US....
Congratulations to the BBFC U14 Eagles, who, following an exceptional 7-1 win over fourth placed Caribb FC, have secured runners up spot in the Tandridge League A Division. Given that the Eagles finished fourth last season this is a fine achievement and shows that the squad is heading in the right direction.
From Rubel Ahmed: "It's amazing what can happen when you join the dots! A relationship with Balham Blazers stretching over fourteen years now, along with a history working in Camden Youth and Connections Service for eight years, has enabled Shampan Foundation to welcome and host a group of 12 young leaders from London as part of their Duke of Edinburgh awards scheme.
January 2015 marked the Shampan Foundation's third birthday. London ambassadors (thanks to the Blazers) bought kits and boots and blankets and pens and their amazing passion and smiles and enthusiasm for our young ones.
Over 850 young people enjoyed a taste of London and London definitely experienced and enjoyed a taste and a little more of Sylhet.
Thanks to all the families of Balham Blazers for thinking of us last Christmas and pulling together to make a difference to the lives of others. You are welcome to visit our beloved foundation and we look forward to meeting you in person one day."
Balham Blazers U17s became the first ever Balham Blazers side to win the London County Cup on Sunday March 29th. In beating Snaresbrook & Interwood 2-0 in the final, played at Mile End Stadium, this fantastic squad, which contains 13 players who have played for the Balham FC Youth team this season, have done a historic treble: London Cup Winners, Tandridge League Champions, Tandridge League Cup Winners. Both goals in what was an excellent all round team performance were scored from the penalty spot by cool as a cucumber Youth team and First team player, Arsen Ujkaj, who also picked up the man of the match award.
Congratulations to the BBFC U17s, who on Thursday March 26th completed the league and cup double, beating Purley Panthers FC 6-2 in the Tandridge League Cup Final at Chipstead FC. A bumper crowd were treated to some special goals scored by the boys from SW12 who now have their eyes firmly fixed on the London Cup Final and a historic treble on Sunday March 29th.
This years' BBFC Sponsored Marathon will take place on Wednesday May 13th: 5pm-8pm on Tooting Bec Common, by Elmbourne Road, at the end of Streathbourne Road.
All players from U8-U14 squads are required to turn up and run 1km as part of a club relay that will complete the 42 km marathon course. We hope to have enough to run two relay teams at the same time.
You can turn up whenever it suits you between 5pm-8pm, register your name at the start and then wait your turn to do your bit. Players are welcome to run and go or, stay with parents, family and friends for as long as they want to for a kick around with other BBFC players.
There will be individual prizes for the fastest 1km run in each age group and medals for the age group team that raises the most sponsorship money.
This is a vitally important fundraiser for the club and we need everyone to raise sponsorship money for it. Download your sponsorship forms. Donations are also welcome.
It's also a social event and you are encouraged to bring a picnic. Hopefully the weather will be kind!
It's not often you see U17s manager, Jim McDonald, suited and booted but, following the U17s TL title win on Sunday March 22nd he met Sky pundit, Jamie Redknapp, at a function. Jamie apparently offered his congratulations to proud Jim, who no doubt was grinning from ear to ear throughout the bit of a do. Jim has also received congratulations from the Selsdon Junior manager, who described the BBFC U17s as the best team Selsdon have ever played.
The U17s clinched the Tandridge A title when they put Purley Panthers to the sword on an historic Sunday morning at Trinity Fields. A 7-0 victory meant the Blazers won the League with three games to spare, with a spectacularly dominant performance over the only side that could catch the SW12 high fliers. Goals came from Ibrahim Olutade (3), Ollie Archard (2), and Morgan Roberts-Watson (2)
The U17s make Blazers history by being the first side to win the top Divisional title of the Tandridge League, and do so having dropped only three points all season, to date scoring 73 goals and conceding just 13.
The whole squad have performed magnificently this season, led superbly by Captain Fantastic Jack Haire. With the Tandridge Cup Final on Thursday March 26th at Chipstead FC, followed by the London County Cup Final on Sunday March 29th, the boys have their eyes on a unique treble!
Squad: Alfie Miller, Sonnie Day, Joe Tulley, Joe Ostrowski, Max Barbour, Tom McDonald, Nikolas Patsalos, Akbar Bashir, Jack Haire, Morgan Roberts- Watson, Ollie Archard, Josh Clark, Ibrahim Olutade, Shaquielle Stephens, Arsen Ujkaj, Emmanuel Bandoh.
On Wednesday March 18th five of our Junior Leaders received their certificates from Greg after successfully completing four hours volunteering in sport. Congratulations to Tom Appleton, Cheick Diabate, Nick Gardener, Ruben Rea and Tane Stappard. We hope to see the boys follow in the footsteps of Alfie Cruttwell, Theo Marks and Tomasz Wocial by joining the BBFC coaching team in the future.
Our first course was incredibly successful, giving the boys an invaluable insight into coaching and refereeing. We hope to offer these to our BBFC players on a regular basis and are looking to run another Junior Leaders course in the Summer Term. It is open to all 12-16 year olds and costs £40 each. If you are interested please contact Zoe Appleton firstname.lastname@example.org stating your preference for Saturday or half term.
Just a reminder to all registered players that physiotherapy sessions are available on Tuesday's from 6-8pm, for half hour sessions (first starting at 6pm and last at 7:30pm). These will be with either Pablo or Katy, who volunteer for the club. The appointments will be in one of the classrooms behind the Chestnut Grove training pitch.
To make an appointment, please contact email@example.com stating the players name, age, team, coach, and a brief description of the problem. Under 18s to be accompanied by an adult please.
BBFC U8s Coach, Alfie Cruttwell, is currently travelling in South America until June. He can be seen in the photo above attending a game at the Estadio Monumental Antonio Vespucio Liberti, known simply as "El Monumental", which is the largest stadium in the country and the home of River Plate FC. Alfie saw them draw 1-1 on March 5th in the South American equivalent of the Champions League against Tigres UANL from Mexico. Although the game itself wasn't the best Alfie said the atmosphere was "mental".
Shock! Horror! Amazement! Having won all three Old Fellers Tournaments last season The Fuzzy Wuzzies went out in the group stages of the first tournament of the 2014-15 season on Friday March 13th. It was left to two new teams to contest the final after another stalwart, Tugboats, lost in the semis. The overall standard was higher than in previous tournaments and given that the average player age was nearer 25 than 45 the Old Fellers tag may need rethinking. A very tight final was won by BBFC U11s coach Jordan Greaves' Not A Day Over 21 team who beat a Lauristons Estate Agents based team, Secret Agents, 1-0. The event, a fundraiser for the general running costs of BBFC raised £570.
We're pleased to announce that Thomas Jefferson from the Under 12 Colts has won January's Jack Petchey Award. Colt's manger Dave Coles said " TJ has a brilliant attitude to training and matches, always trying his best and is very supportive of his team mates. This season we lost our goalie part way through and he has subsequently played the majority of games in goal. His team mates recognise that this isn’t his favourite position but he has given 100% and won man of the match on two occasions. From a coach’s viewpoint he is a pleasure to work with as he is polite, always has a smile on his face and has an excellent football brain" Congratulations Thomas on the award. He is hoping to spend the money recieved from the Jack Petchey Foundation on a new away kit for the team.
Congratulations to Game On, the U9 parents team, who won the much coveted BBFC Quiz Night trophy on Saturday February 28th. Although it was, as ever, keenly contested, Game On won in the end by a clear five points. Many thanks to Lisa Kerr, who organised another sold out event superbly and to the team of BBFC helpers, who included: Jennie Molyneux, Sue Lamont, Mike Allen, Kate Jefferson, Sue Carter, Jaqi Whittaker, Philip Whittaker and Barbara McPhee. Thanks also to Matthew Taylor, who compiled an excellent Quiz and to all the cup cake makers, who provided a stunning assortment of calorific treats. The Quiz Night is traditionally the biggest fundraiser of the year at BBFC and it looks as though, as it always has done previously, it will have raised, once again, a substantial amount of much needed funds for the general running of the club.
We were delighted to host another In-Service Coaching event for the London FA at Chestnut Grove School on Friday February 20th. The two hour practical and classroom session on The Future Game was delivered by former Southampton and Swindon Town footballer Jon Gittens, who is a UEFA "A" Licence Coach and FA Regional Coach Development Manager for 11-16 year olds. Jon used the high flying BBFC U17s for his practical. The event proved to be very popular with over 50 coaches from local clubs in attendance, along with some from further afield.
Great fun was had by all at the recent BBFC Race Night at St Mary's Church Hall, Trinity Road on Friday 23rd January. Whilst the families of our younger teams mingled, the boys had a brilliant time trying their luck at the Tote which was very busy for each of the 8 races. Congratulations to all the winners! Delicious hot dogs and cakes were also on offer. Many thanks to the U10 teams who helped to organise the event which raised £250 profit for the club.
There was another BBFC derby in the U10s on Saturday February 21st when the Colts and Eagles met in the top division of the London County Saturday Youth Football League. The game, played on the 3g at Chestnut Grove, was a close encounter with the Eagles just edging it 2-1. Both squads, who play the game in the right manner, are progressing very well this season and are a credit to themselves, their coaches and all at BBFC.
Fabio Carvalho, wearing a Chicago Bulls top in the picture above, returned to visit his U13 Colts team mates at their training session at Chestnut Grove on Wednesday February 18th. It's always great to see Fabio, who lights up anywhere with his charismatic personality as well as his footballing skills. We miss him a lot at BBFC but are thrilled that he's had a great start at Fulham where he signed a four year deal earlier in the season.
U11 player Ben Hopper and his lifelong Liverpool supporting dad, Ed, got lucky on a half term holiday to Tenerife. Father and son popped into a sports bar to watch the second half of the Real Madrid v Schalke 04 Champions League game on Wednesday February 18th only to be joined in the bar by Liverpool legend and Sky pundit, Jamie Carragher. Not only did he come in to watch the game, he actually sat and watched it with a star struck, gobsmacked, Ed and Ben, who chatted away with him about the beautiful game. Both of them said how friendly and nice he was, which is always good to hear. Not only was Jamie Carragher a top player but he's clearly a top person too..
Congratulations to BBFC Committee Members, Zoe Appleton, Del Fordham, Morag Rea and Patrick Walker, who all won Voluntary Services to Sport Awards at the 2014 Active Wandsworth Sports Awards, which took place in the Wandsworth Civic Suite on Thursday February 12th.
The first BBFC Old Fellers 6-a-side Tournament of the 2014-15 season will take place on Friday March 13th. Players past their prime but, who still fancy that they have a bit of the Messi about them, will be taking to the 3g at Chestnut Grove School, SW12 8JZ, in a keenly contested eight team tournament. Squads can be up to 10 players. Entry fee is £10 per player.
We're seeking entries from eight teams who will play in two groups, followed by two semi-finals and a final. Group games will commence at 7pm and the final will finish at 10pm.
So, why not put a team together from the BBFC age group that you are involved with, or, if you have a work team outside the club or a group of friends that you play with, why not enter them.
First come first served, so get on the case NOW! If any individuals want to be placed on a team let us know and we’ll try and sort it out.
Entries with team names to Greg Cruttwell at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 07763 581 523.
All monies raised, in what is an important fund raiser, will go towards the running costs of Balham Blazers FC.
The always popular Balham Blazers FC Quiz Night is coming up on Saturday February 28th. Please see the attached flyer for details and book your tickets text or call Lisa Kerr on 07949 393274,
or email lisa.
This fundraising event is incredibly important for the club and is also a big social event where parents and friends of BBFC come together for a very entertaining, fun night out, with a bit of friendly competition thrown in. There’s a trophy and medals to win for the champion quiz team on the night!
We really hope that new parents in the club and friends of the club support this event as it's by coming to club nights such as these that you get a feel for what goes on away from the touchline.
You can come alone or bring family and friends. There will be a very tasty curry on the menu and a well stocked bar.
It would be fantastic if each age group squad can enter a team - however you don’t have to be on a team to book tickets and anyone who needs to be put on team on the night can and will be.
There is limited space and the event has always sold out so please don’t leave it to the last minute. Get on the case now.
It’s Balham’s big night out of the year. Make sure you don’t miss it.
The U17s are through to the final of the London County Cup after a tremendous 5-1 victory against Welling Wanderers at Richardson Evans on Sunday February 8th.
Arsen Ujkaj took the goalscoring honours with a second half hat-trick, after the prolific Ibrahim Olutade and inspirational skipper Jack Haire opened up a 2-0 first half lead.
Balham’s presence in the London final means they are well placed for a Cup double, having already reached the final of the Tandridge League Cup.
The fifth goal yesterday was their 100th in all competitions this season, at a rate of over six goals a game. Ibrahim leads the way with an incredible 32 goals from just 16 fixtures.
Well placed in the Tandridge League A Division, the SW12 boys have their eyes on a unique treble!.
On 24th January BBFC’s budding Mourinho’s, Ferguson’s and Collina’s attended an FA Junior Leaders course run by Matt Dunn of Essential Sports. The weather was kind to the boys who spent lots of time outside setting up drills, playing short games and refereeing as well as in the classroom. The day was a huge success and all the boys thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Well done to Charlie Appleton, Tom Appleton, Cheick Diabate, Arthur Fordham, Fred Fordham, Nick Gardner, Luke Knight, Luca Maraviglia, Josh O’Grady, Ruben Rea, Ethan Riley and Tane Stappard.
"The course was really interesting and included learning how to referee as well as coaching. It made me understand how difficult it is to see all aspects of the game and to make decisions quickly to keep the flow of the game. The highlight for me was the games we played, coached and refereed and it was fun using the whistle. It was great to get to know other BBFC players from different teams too. I want to go on to a refereeing course and learn some more coaching. I appreciate more what goes into the coaching I get now too! " (Ruben Rea U13 Eagles).
We’ll be looking to run another one later in the year hopefully, it is open to all 12-16 year olds.
Congratulations to Eddie Luchford who has been nominated at the 2014 Active Wandsworth Sports Awards on February 12th for the highly prestigious Sports Person of the Year Award. Eighteen year old Eddie, who has been at BBFC since he was eight, had an amazing season in 2013-14, scoring 62 goals in 46 games for the Balham FC First Team and BBFC Youth Team. Congratulations also to BBFC Committee Members, Zoe Appleton, Del Fordham, Morag Rea and Patrick Walker, who have all been nominated for Voluntary Services to Sport Awards.
There was yet another BBFC Friendly Derby in the U14s on Sunday January 11th when the Colts and Eagles met in the quarter finals of the London Cup. It's a real shame that both Balham teams, having got this far, had to face off against each other but face off they did in a cup cracker, won by the Colts 3-2. There are three BBFC teams now through to the semi finals of what is the age group equivalent of the Champions League. Our U13 Colts, following a 3-2 win against Bromley FC Junior Rooks are also through, as are our U17s. The semi finals will be played in February.
If you're currently looking for full time work the Prince's Trust are currently running a 12 week development programme aimed at unemployed individuals aged 16-25. The action packed 12 week programme is totally free and travel expenses are imbursed.
The aim of the programme is to develop young people’s skills trough teamwork. The team will comprise of approximately 15 young people who will get the chance to attend a four day residential team building in the Peak District, complete community projects, gain valuable work experience, focus on their next steps and do a final presentation of all their achievements to friends, family, support workers and project partners.
Over 70% of Prince's Trust Team members go on to employment, education or training.
If you're interested in joining, the next set of teams are being interviewed to start on 19th and 26th January based at South Thames College in Tooting.
For more information please have a look at the below links and contact Darran O'Grady, the Prince' Trust Team Leader if you're interested in applying.
South Thames Princes Trust
Tooting Team Facebook Team
Long term friend of BBFC, Rubel Ahmed, was looking for kit for his projects within the Shampan Foundation and we were more than happy to oblige. Our marvellous parents answered the call for boots and trainers and donated dozens of pairs for the charity at short notice. Kit Secretary, Zoe Appleton, cleared our stocks of old kit and handed them over to Rubel who will be taking them to Bangladesh with a team of volunteers early in the New Year. There are over 1000 youngsters registered with the foundation in Sylhet and we look forward to seeing their progress in Balham colours soon. .
A group of U9 lads, dads and siblings decided to burn off some Christmas excess on Saturday December 27th. A thrilling encounter between the blues and reds was won 10-9 by the blues with the winning goal coming from U14 Eagles player, Marshall Travers-Elwin.
Some of you may recognise the Santa seen above delivering prezzies to a Children's Home in Poland. It is of course none other than Balham's former Evertonian volunteer Physiotherapist, Darren Gregoire, who is studying medicine out there. Given the Toffees recent form in England Dazza may be thankful he's in Polska rather than back home in Blighty.
Balham players past and present gathered at Southfields Academy on Tuesday December 23rd for a Christmas training 11-a-side game. It was great to see so many returnees back where they started and particularly good to see Jermaine Townsend back in action, looking as sharp as ever.
As every team at BBFC, apart from the Balham FC First Team who have games on Saturday December 27th and January 3rd, takes a short breather before league and cup campaigns recommence in the New Year, I thought I'd give you all a very brief end of term report. To sum it up in 4 words - So Far So Good.
The last game before Christmas saw our U17s win their Tandridge League Cup Semi Final, coming back from 3-1 down in the second half to win 4-3 AET. Let's hope they are the first of many to make Cup Finals this season.
Most of our teams are challenging for league or divisional titles:
Balham First Team currently 3rd in the Surrey Elite League
Youth Team currently 1st in the Southern Youth League Central Division
U17s currently 3rd in the Tandridge League A Division
U14 Eagles currently 2nd in the Tandridge League A Division
U13 Eagles currently 2nd in the Tandridge League A Division
U13 Colts currently 3rd in the Tandridge League A Division
U12 Eagles currently 2nd in the Tandridge League A Division
U12 Youth currently 4th in the Tandridge League B Division
U12 Colts currently 3rd in the Tandridge League C Division
U11s currently 2nd in the Tandridge League B Division
We also still have U12, U13, U14 and U17 teams in the London Cup - the age group equivalent of the Champions League.
Our U8-U10 teams, who all play non competitive football, where tables and results are not published, have also done exceptionally well to date.
Results are of course only part of the story. Our main concern, as always, is the style and quality of football that our teams play and thankfully on that front too everyone has done very well so far.
On behalf of all those behind the scenes at BBFC I'd like to take this opportunity to wish all players and their families a very Happy Christmas and New Year. We look forward to seeing you all back in training or in action, popping it about on the green baize, in 2015.
Come on you Balham!!!!!!!!!!!!!
- Greg Cruttwell, General Manager
Current BBFC U14 Eagles player, Sam Arbuckle and former BBFC player, Will Donkin, currently at Chelsea FC, both recently took part in the U14 ISFA National Squad training at St George's Park. As part of the get together they played two matches against academy sides, beating Burton Albion 3-1 and Watford 4-0. Both Sam and Will were on the scoresheet.
Thanks to an award from the Jack Petchey Foundation, on December 10th the U14 Eagles tookthe concept of team bonding to another level. In a Haka workshop, delivered by two excellent instructors, the boys were introduced to the traditional Maori dance and after some intensive coaching they were channeling their own true warrior spirit. Many thanks to Karl, Vallance and Ted from Manaia.
(Watch the video).
To say BBFC U13 Colts player, Fabio Carvalho, has been in demand is something of an understatement. First to come calling were Arsenal, then Chelsea, Fulham and Brentford. Word soon spread and down came Man Utd and Liverpool and up came Southampton. Crystal Palace and QPR came calling too. Interest has been expressed and offers have been made by many clubs but, after two months of visits and sessions and meetings, we are delighted to announce that on Tuesday December 9th Fabio put pen to paper at Motspur Park, signing a four year deal with Fulham, who have an exceptional Category One Academy under the Directorship of Huw Jennings. With the circus that has surrounded Fabs now over we all look forward to seeing him flourish in SW6 and hope to see him follow in the footsteps of academy starlets, Patrick Roberts, Moussa Dembele and Emerson Hyndman, all age group internationals for England, France and the USA and all current First team players. Many thanks go to BBFC Staff members, Ollie Kanner, Kien Millington and Pedro Soares, who have put in a lot of work helping General Manager, Greg Cruttwell and the Carvalho family sort out the best way forward for this exciting young player.
On Tuesday night Balham trio Tane Stappard, Cayo Natalio-Polo and Marco Gagnier were recognised at the Jack Petchey Regional Awards evening at the Wandsworth Civic Centre. Featuring some of South Londons finest volunteers, carers and performers the trio received awards for being nominated by their peers for the Jack Petchey Acheivement Award. The players were presented with their awards by Olympic Silver medallist Mark Richardson who gave an inspiring speech about the trials and tribulations of his athletic career culminating in his silver medal at the Atlanta games.
As part of the award they each got £200 to spend on their team. As Tane is part Maori he decided to spend the money on a Haka workshop for him and the rest of the Under 14 Eagles, stay posted for the video!! Marco and Cayo both decided to spend their money on a much needed away kit for their teams. Congratulations to all three players.
It was the turn of the Under 13 Colts to nominate one of their peers for the Jack Petchey Award in November. Cayo Natalio-Polo received the award for showing outstanding leadership and sportmanship whilst playing for the Balham Blazers. Cayo has had a fantastic season to date playing left back for the team, during this time he has been a consistently top achiever both in terms of his performances and in the way he conducts himself on the pitch. He is an example to his team mates and to the other Balham Blazers teams. Pictured is Cayo receiving his award from team managers JR and Lee.
Following on from the BBFC v BBFC U14s derby a few weeks previously, it was the U13 Colts and Eagles turn to do battle, not only on Sunday December 7th in the last 32 of the London Cup but also the week before in the Tandridge League A Division. Both games were won by the Colts but demonstrated the talent and strength in depth that BBFC has in this age group.
On November 25th, BBFC Coach, Jaden Cameron, lived the dream, when he played and coached on the hallowed turf at Wembley. He spent the day coaching a Mars executive and employees team who were playing a similar team from Tesco, in a friendly between the two FA partners. Unfortunately, although he had help from Arsenal legend Ray Parlour, Mars lost 5-1 to a Tesco team lead by Man Utd legend Lee Sharpe. Despite losing the game however Jaden had the time of his life.
We are delighted to welcome talented new coaches Ben Carr and Jordan Greaves to BBFC this season. Jordan is doing a great job coaching and managing our U11s whilst Ben is doing an equally good job coaching and managing the all new womens team, Balham Panthers FC. Both Jordan and Ben have played themselves in the past . Jordan represented his school at District and County level and also played for West Ham United Academy at youth level. He has been coaching for seven years, the past two being spent in the USA. Prior to that he coached for QPR at Harrow School. He is currently delivering P.E. lessons at Primary Schools in Lambeth six days a week, in addition to taking on his new role at BBFC. Ben has played for various teams but always wanted to start coaching as soon as he could. He has completed his FA Level 2 and Youth Module 1 and is looking to progress further. He has been coaching a men's team in the Southern Amateur League for the past few years. Whilst wanting to continue at Old Salesians FC, Ben was also keen to take on a new challenge and that challenge is BPFC. Both Ben and Jordan share the same philosophy to all at Balham in terms of the way football should be played and we look forward to both of them playing a big part in the future of the club..
It was the turn of the Under 12 Youth to nominate a player for the Jack
Petchey Award in October. Marco Gagnier was the outright winner with his
teammates recognising his commitment to training. Marco, as well as a number of his team mates have not missed a single training session in two years. This is a fantastic acheivement and one
which all Balham players should strive for. Pictured is Marco celebrating
the award with team manager Jaden Cameron and his team mates. As well
as receiving a certificate and £200 to spend on the team Marco will also be
invited to attend a regional award ceremony where his acheivement will be
further recognised. From everyone at Balham Blazers congratulations Marco
and keep up the good work.
Players and coaches said adios amigo and muchas gracias to goalkeeping coach, Jose Miguel Vega, on Tuesday November 11th, following his last session with the First Team and Youth Team keepers. Having been in London for over a year Jose (in blue in the picture above) is heading back to his homeland. During his time in London he has done outstanding work with keepers in many different age groups at BBFC. We are all very sorry to see him depart but the top tips our keepers have picked up from him will stick with them forever.
Anyone of a Balham bent who was watching the BBC's Football Focus on Saturday November 8th, which came on FA Cup first round day from Weston Super Mare FC, may have spotted that pundit, Jason Roberts, sitting alongside Mark Lawrenson in the home club's changing room, was perched on a bench in front of a Fiddes shirt. That shirt of course belongs to former BBFC Youth team player, Alec Fiddes. Unfortunately Alec didn't get to wear it on the day as the game was postponed twenty minutes before kick off. Fingers crossed though that the Balham boy scores the winning goal in it when he slips it on again for the rescheduled tie against League One side, Doncaster Rovers.
Most people get a clock when they retire but 26 year old Robin Shroot has just got one as player of the year for his Norwegian Division One club, Il Hodd. Robin has had a great season scoring 16 times. Gratulerer Shrooty!
All BBFC teams observed a minutes silence on Remembrance Sunday November 9th, in honour of fallen service personnel.
U16 player, Arthur Fordham, proudly wore the swanky new BBFC black training top on a recent school trip, sitting on the Great Wall of China.
Ibrahim Olutade has become the first ever BBFC player to score goals for three different Balham teams in the same week. On Thursday October 30th he scored a hat trick for the Youth team in a 5-0 SYL Cup win at home to Molesey. On Saturday November 1st he scored his first ever goal for the Balham FC First team in a 2-0 away win at Spelthorne Sports and on Sunday November 2nd he scored another hat trick for the U17s in an 8-1 Tandridge League Cup win at home to Selsdon Junior.
Tane Stappard was the first player to receive the inaugural Jack Petchey Acheivement Award. Voted by his peers in the U14s Eagles Tane was nominated for the award for consistently showing great leadership. As well as receiving a certificate and £200 to spend on the team Tane will also be invited to attend a regional award ceremony where his acheivement will be further recognised. Pictured is Tane receiving the award from Club Coach and Committee Member Patrick Walker and celebrating with his fellow team members on a cold, wet and windy day in Wandsworth. Massive congratulations to Tane from everyone at Balham Blazers.
The first BBFC Half Term Camp of the season, in the last week of October, was a great success, with players from U8-U14 attending. There was, as ever, some top quality football played and some top quality golf too - Football Golf. Congratulations to U9, Maxwell Emmery, who won the U8-U11 Football Golf competition, played over the three days and to U12, Tom Lees and U14, Luke Hedges, who shared top spot in the U12-U14s.
Whilst the BBFC Half Term Campers gathered on Clapham Common, Tom and Jack Appleton flew the flag for BBFC in Dubai, both running and doing exceptionally well in a 4k event.
We are delighted to welcome Katy Andriou to BBFC as a new volunteer physiotherapist. Katy graduated in 2013 from the University of Essex and started volunteering with us in September 2014. She will be taking some Tuesday physiotherapy clinics at Chestnut Grove School and working alongside fellow volunteer physiotherapist, Pablo Santander. BBFC offers free physiotherapy to all registered players in the club. To book an appointment please email Pablo and Katy at email@example.com
Having managed to keep it on show for three months after the World Cup, BBFC General Manager, Greg Cruttwell's World Cup Wall finally came down on Sunday October 25th. Where there was Spain crashing out, seventh hell for Brazil, Chiellini's bitten shoulder and Germany in triumph, white walls have returned. All that now remains as a reminder of the football fare in Brazil is the odd tiny mark left by World Cup Wall blu tack.
Having left these shores for a new challenge, after spells at Birmingham City and Stevenage, ex BBFC Coach, Robin Shroot, is now playing for Il Hodd in Norway. The former Northern Ireland U21 international is having a great time and is loving his football in the land of the Vikings. He's scored 13 goals in 20 games so far this season for the first division club, who have previously played in the Europa League. To see two his most recent brace - both top finishes - in a 4-2 home win click here and look out for number 11. View the video
After a season off whilst they were in separate divisions it was time, once again, for the BBFC U14 Colts and Eagles to stage their "Friendly Derby" when they met in the Tandridge A division on Sunday. These games are always tight, tense affairs with significant bragging rights at stake on top of 3 vital league points. This one was played in a good spirit and, with a half time score of 2-1, was in the balance for most of the game. Both keepers made startling saves but goals for the Eagles came from Sebastian Fallowfield, a 20 yard drive after a short corner, Fred Fordham, smashing in the rebound from close range after a miraculous goal line stop by Oscar Groltz, a far post header from Gus Colfer and the goal of the game from Nile Shaw at the end of a sublime move. Luca Bentivoglio equallised for the Colts after a strong run from Tiannie Wilson. The final score of 4-1 to the Eagles was quickly forgotten as many of the players went back onto the pitch for a good old "school playground" kickabout after the match. Like watching two Brazils.
We are delighted to see and hear that Anna Prawer is doing very well at the Arsenal FC Academy. Anna entered this season having been spotted playing for the title winning Balham Blazers FC U11 Youth Team towards the end of last season.
Super talented, majestic, First Team player, Julian Fuller, currently in Brazil for a year as part of his degree at Aston University, has been in touch to say that, surprise surprise - not, he's having a fantastic time. He's been to Sao Paulo, Rio and other places, traveling, as instructed, with his Blazers bag. He's watched and played the beautiful game on the Copacabana beach and the beach at Ipanema too. He's now hoping to join the team at the University he's studying at. He's watched a training session and says that the coach is crazy, crazy for football like most people in Brazil. He's also seen Sao Paulo play Santos and says the atmosphere was amazing. All in all our Mr Fuller is having a full on fiesta. He's loving the football, the people, the food and the beer although he misses a nice plate of fish and chips and his family too we hope and all at Balham FC. We all certainly miss him!
U9 Maxwell Emmery's two worlds collided, when he stood recently outside The Theatre Of Dreams in his BBFC hoodie. One day perhaps he'll be inside, running out onto the pitch in a Man U kit or, even better, in a BBFC one.
Balham Blazers are pleased to announce they have been selected to be part of the Jack Petchey Achievement Award scheme.
Each month players from a chosen team will be nominate one player who has shown great leadership or sportsmanship. The nominated player will receive a certificate, membership card and will be given an Achievement Award Scheme Grant of £200 to be spent on the club.
Established in 1999 the Jack Petchey Foundation enables young people aged 11-25 to achieve their potential by inspiring, investing in, developing and promoting activities that increase their personal, social, emotional and physical development. Hannah Celia, Head of Grants for the Foundation said “The Jack Petchey Foundation is pleased to welcome Balham Blazers to the Achievement Award Scheme. We feel that the scheme will benefit the excellent work undertaken by Balham Blazers, and will enable young people to recognise the achievements and talents of their peers”
For a copy of the award overview download this PDF
For a copy of the Balham wish list download this PDF
For further information regarding the Jack Petchey Foundation please see their website
It's that time of year again when another crop of long serving BBFC players fly the nest to embark on university life. Yuyi "The Rock" Kabanje is off to Derby, Khalid Savage to Loughborough, Louis Farquharson and Luke Fenlon to Chichester, Ollie Keyser to Manchester and Isaac Wong has flown all the way to the USA where he's on a four year football scholarship. We also have plenty of others in their second, third, or fourth years. Michael McConnell at Southampton, Tom Jelliffe and Tom Read at Loughborough, Jermaine Townsend at Hull, Eliot Garcia at Bournemouth, Daniel Forde at Cambridge, Ramoy Jones at Hertfordshire, Haydn Read at Oxford Brookes, Fred Fox at Leeds and Charlie Barthorp at Nottingham. Joe Holland is back in the USA on a football scholarship, Julian Fuller is in Brazil on a years placement as part of his degree at Aston University and Alec "Messi" Fiddes, having played in Spain for a year at Lleida FC, is at Bristol, where he's combining his degree with playing for Weston Super Mare FC in the Conference South. The picture above is of Alec on the front of a recent match day programme. At the same time as some fly off we are also welcoming some back, including Guy Farquharson from Leeds Met and Alfie Cruttwell from Birmingham, who is coaching our new U8s this season together with Theo Marks, who has just graduated from Manchester.
New U8 Coaches, Alfie Cruttwell and Theo Marks, can be seen in the picture above, a decade ago in 2004, having just won the Walter Perry Cup Final for BBFC U11s. Alfie(bottom left), who was in the very first BBFC team to win a trophy in 2002 and Theo(top right) have both recently graduated from university and are back in London on a gap year. We are delighted that teaming up together, steeped in the playing philosophy of BBFC, they have taken up roles as U8 Coaches, working with the newest and youngest squad in the club.
Balham's First Team match v Ripley Village FC on Saturday September 13th was abandoned in the second half after Balham striker, Jermaine Townsend, suffered a cardiac arrest. It was an incredibly traumatic experience for everyone there. The player concerned, young, fit and very talented, has been at this club for many years but on Saturday he very nearly lost his life at the age of twenty doing the thing he loves most. Thanks to Balham parent Lucy Collier, Club Chair Jennie Molyneux, Diana Luchford, various others from both clubs and crucially the fact that there happened to be a paramedic on site, Jermaine survived and is now recovering well in hospital. This incident highlights again the need for players aged 14-35 to have cardiac screenings in order to identify any unknown heart conditions which doing sport and pushing the body to extremes can trigger.
Please see the following re Cardiac Risk In The Young:
Download the Cry Heart Screening brochure
Fifa website players health page
The Cardiac Risk In The Young unit is based at St George's Hospital in Tooting, right on the doorstep of all BFC and BBFC players. Screenings can be booked by contacting them. We are as a club in the process of attempting to organise a blanket screening for all players aged 14+ in the club. Further information on this will follow asap.
For further information visit CRY Website
The newly formed Balham Panthers FC took a point in their first league game drawing 2-2 with London Phoenix on Sunday September 7th. Following a 3-1 win the week before in a pre season friendly this, as the final scoreline suggests was an even game. The Panthers first goal to take the lead came from a Mary Richards corner, scored by Clara Cardoso. They then conceded two, one either side of half time, survived a penalty award and missed a couple of good chances, before Becky McCarthy, on her Panthers debut, made an excellent solo run down the left and restored parity. Panthers player of the match was Sarah Campbell, also on her debut, who put in a robust and intelligent performance at right back.
The U12 BBFC Eagles traveled down to Kent to take part in the Club Langley pre-season tournament on Sunday Sept 7th. On arrival, the grass appeared to have been allowed to grow all summer and the goals were as wide as a Men's 11 aside goal. However, such minor inconveniences could not stop what proved to be an excellent day for the club. The Eagles managed to dominate much of the group stages, despite facing some old school "route 1" football, and cruised into the semifinals as the Group 2 winner. The semi-final proved to be a one-sided affair and the Eagles ran out deserved 2-0 winners to set up a clash with fellow Tandridge League rivals, Sevonoaks. The final capped off a wonderful day as we managed to put 2 goals past Sevenoaks, while keeping a 7th clean sheet in a row (and thus not conceding a goal all afternoon!) and coming home Club Langley Tournament Champions. Team: Joe Whittaker, Jack Redmond, Ayo Bakre, Trey Gordon, James Myres, Teddy Watling, Ryan Awatefe, Luke Cahusac, Thomas Lees, Clay Chapman.
A great start to pre-season for the U13 Eagles. Both BBFC teams entered made it to the knockout stages of the Sandhurst 5-aside tournament on Sunday August 31st. One team got eliminated in the playoffs with the oppositions only attack of the game, but our other team made it all the way to the final where they controlled the game only to lose on a penalty shootout. Both teams played some excellent football, which bodes well for the forthcoming season.
As the new season gets underway again we hope all our players are in tip top condition. If not this is just a reminder that we have the club physio Pablo Santander on hand on Tuesday evenings at Chestnut Grove. If you would like to get in touch with him please email him at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange an appointment. Best of luck to all our teams this season. Come on you Blazers!!!!!
This season, 2014-15, Balham FC are continuing to grow, adding a Ladies’ team to our armoury for the first time ever. We have welcomed Panthers WFC into the fold, an FA Charter Standard team who play in the Greater London Womens Football League Division 2 (South). Last season, the team secured a mid-table finish, and hope to build on Balham’s successes of last season to push for the league title. The squad will train on Wednesday nights at Kennington Park, Oval from 7.45pm and play on Sunday afternoons at 2pm (home ground currently Tooting Bec). We are currently recruiting players to bolster the squad so, whether you're a striker, defender or goalkeeper, please get in contact with BPFC Team Rep, Alison Campbell and join us at training to see if Balham Panthers FC is the club for you!
Our Bursary Fund offers full or part bursaries to players selected to play for the club who can't afford all or part of the fees. To keep funding this scheme as the club grows we invite parents and friends of the club, in a position to do so, to support us by contributing donations to the Bursary Fund.
Please give if you can - this is an amazing way to give a child the joy of developing their football skills and being part of a team within a thriving club. Any donations are extremely generous and very much welcomed by the club and our Bursary recipients.
If you have been selected to play for the club and would like to apply for Bursary funding please contact the club:email@example.com
Balham Blazers is pleased to announce the continuation of the work placement scheme for players at the club which was launched successfully in 2013-14.
All registered players, U16s and above, are eligible and it will provide them with an opportunity to gain some invaluable work experience in an increasingly competitive job market.
As well as potential work placements there is also the opportunity to get some help on tailoring your CV as well get hints and tips on interview skills.
We are very grateful to the BBFC community for all the help that has been kindly offered to make placements available. General Manager Greg Cruttwell said "We as a club are keen to help our players off the football field, as well as on it. This scheme will hopefully provide opportunities to do so and we are very grateful to all those who have supported it.”
If anyone else would like to get involved in the scheme then please contact Patrick Walker at firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.