Football / Local / News

Community group using sport to bring neighbourhoods together

A Middlesbrough community sports group  has held a football tournament in order to bring people closer together.

The competition was set up by TS1: Tees Valley Sport which is  a local community group based in Middlesbrough Town Centre.

Jamia FC were crowned champions as they defeated Abbeys Pizza 4-1 in a high scoring final.

The organisation’s aim is to bring the local community closer and to promote health and fitness.

This community spirit was seen after the tournament when on finding out that the captain of the opposition’s son had died at James Cook Hospital, Jamia FC decided to donate their winnings of £250 to the hospital.

Thirty-two teams, from different faiths and nationalities,  entered the competition.

People from places such as Sri Lanka, Kurdistan and Eritrea took part in the event.


Participants from Kurdistan

Rather than a straight knock out competition, the tournament consisted of four leagues with eight teams allowing participants to play a minimum of seven games during the day.

All proceeds went to the One Ummah organisation, an Islamic charity that has worked closely with those affected by the Syrian conflict.

TS1 work very closely with people from all backgrounds, in particular those from the BaME (Black and Minority Ethnic) community.

Community Leader Gohar Ihrsan said: “Through sport we hope to break down cultural barriers as football especially is popular globally.”

“Through this common interest people come together and integrate while exercising at the same time.”


Jamia FC captain receiving the winning trophy.

Runners up Abbey’s Pizza with Gohar Ihrsan (left)




Although they are involved in other sports football is TS1 main focus and because of  previous successful projects the group now work in partnership with the North Riding FA.

They have helped 150 children take part in organised football and it is hoped this could produce some stars for the future.

Gohar said: “We have a passion to get youngsters involved in sport and fitness and if talent is spotted we want to give the children the best platform to succeed.”

Future plans are set to include a 100 team summer tournament, consisting of players from across the country and if achieved this will be the largest football tournament held in the UK to date.

If you are interested in competing contact TS1:Tees Valley Sport on Facebook or @1ts1teesvalley on Twitter.



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