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Foundation Searching For Wheelchair Stars

NUFC Logo Newcastle United FC

Newcastle United Foundation is giving disabled supporters an opportunity to test their football skills from next week

Newcastle United Foundation is giving disabled supporters an opportunity to test their football skills from next week after announcing two wheelchair football taster sessions in one of the city's state-of-the-art sports centres.

The Club's official registered charity has linked up with the Wheelchair Football Association to bring the two free sessions to the Walker Activity Dome in Newcastle, which was reopened by Magpies stars Shola and Sammy Ameobi in February 2013 following almost £3 million of investment by Newcastle City Council and the Premier League's Community Facility Fund.

Wheelchair football - commonly known as powerchair football - has the same scoring system as regular football but is played over two 20-minute halves on a standard-sized basketball court. Each of the two teams consists of four players, with each player using wheelchairs with specially adapted foot guards.

The first two-hour session will take place at 6.30pm on Monday, 15th July, with a second session scheduled for 6.30pm on Monday, 9th September.

Reggie Dornan, of the Newcastle United Foundation, said: "We have been trying to organise a powerchair football centre for some time and it's great that we can now do that in conjunction the Wheelchair Football Association.

"If they are successful, we will run a 36-week programme annually over three years thanks to our funder and partner, BBC Children In Need."

While wheelchair football has been played since the 1970s, it has developed rapidly in the UK in recent years, with the formation of the Wheelchair Football Association (WFA) in 2005 - in partnership with the Football Association - the catalyst for domestic progress.

A member of the Federation Internationale de Powerchair Football Association (FIFPA), the England WFA National Team finished runners up at the 2011 FIFPA World Cup in France, losing out to the United States in the final with a squad which featured a number of North East-based players.

Sessions are free of charge. Please register your interest to attend by contacting Reggie Dornan via Reggie.Dornan@nufc.co.uk or by calling 07826 870237.