Davis Derby’s field support engineer, John Cooper, has recently shot to fame after being selected to play for the England Walking Football Association team.
At his first game for England John scored twice and was named man of the match in just the second international game for the England team.
Fellow team members include Alan Kennedy from Liverpool who joined England over 60s squad earlier this year and, Tommy Charlton, the younger brother of World Cup Winners Bobby and Jack, played in the win against Italy in May and is an Ambassador for the WFA.
The team is now looking forward to the 2020 World Cup and the Euros in 2019 which they are confident they will be able to play at a high level expected in international football.
John Cooper reflects on his success: “It was such a proud moment to pull on an England shirt and represent our country. I think the moment it really hit me was when I stood in the middle of the pitch singing the national anthem. Scoring twice in that match was the icing on the cake.”
Walking football is fast becoming a popular mainstream sport, with more than one thousand clubs now regularly playing in tournaments in the UK. Walking football is aimed at the over 50’s age group, with many tournaments catering exclusively for the over 60’s. Different to regular Association Football, walking football has its own specific rules, such as no running and no contact.
John Cooper has been playing for the Hartshill Strollers for three years, and earlier this year was selected to represent England at an international level. John’s success came after he was put forward by his team manager against one hundred and fifty other hopefuls in regional trials. John was selected and now plays with twenty other successful team members.
The WFA https://thewfa.co.uk/ governing body.