Matt Marches On

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Matt Robinson from Penzance was one of only 4 players from the South West to be part of the national‘FA Emerging Talent Camp’ at St Georges Park on Saturday 3 November.

Matt plays for The FA South West Cerebral Palsy Centre of Excellence squad. A brief sentence which belies the amount of effort it takes Matt and his family to get there.

In order to play at that level of football, Matt gets up virtually every Saturday morning at 4am to catch the 5.37am train to Taunton with his dad.

 

Although the journey is almost 4 hours long, the train changes at Plymouth mean he doesn’t have much time to catch 40 winks on the way up. Once it arrives in Taunton at around 9.20am, it’s then a further taxi ride to Somerset College where the Centre of Excellence is based.

Matt then has a short time to get changed into kit for the 2 hour training session which starts at 10am and finishes at 12noon.

After his shower, Matt and hid dad, Adey, walk into the town to get some lunch and reflect on the training before heading up to the train station for 14.37 return train to Penzance which arrives back at around 6.30pm. 

 

Matt (with support from Cornwall FA) successfully applied for a grant from the Lord Lieutenant’s Fund and a bursary towards the train fares.

“Matt was always drawn to sport and only days after he had started walking; he was kicking a football around the living room floor,” according to Matt’s dad, Adey, “By the age of 5 his mum had taught him to swim and this helped to strengthen his legs enough for him to participate in school sports and locally run football fun days. Matt seemed to find his love for football very quickly and has played for Ludgvan Lions, Trythall School, and Penzance Soccer Stars run by Maurice Holland.”

After a recommendation from Tom Ball, a PE Teacher at Matt’s school, Humphry Davy in Penzance, it was through Maurice that Matt’s attention was drawn to a trial for disability football players.

The Centre of Excellence at Somerset College has some of the best football coaches in the country and they keep in regular contact with the England Cerebral Palsy setup about the development of their players.

The weekly training sessions are also attended by a team of dedicated students from Exeter University who work and keep records on the fitness, nutrition and psychology of all of the players.

There are a total of 20 sessions over the season along with 6 fixtures at venues including the London Soccerdome and Lilleshall National Sports Centre in Shropshire.

Matt’s preferred position is right midfield and he has scored goals in both of the opening fixtures for the South West CoE.
The ultimate goal for Matt is to play for England CP and the GB Paralympic CP Football Squads.

He has also won the Pirate FM Sporting Heroes Award for 2012.

 


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