Soho Albion continues to thrive

ALBION’s ground-breaking youth football club in the Birmingham ward of Soho is flourishing following its launch this summer.

With its creation - just weeks after Punjabi-led Supporters' Club Apna Albion - Soho Albion became the first football setup for youngsters in the Soho ward and the only free-of-charge junior outfit to be organised and supported by a Premier League club's Academy Recruitment department.

It's the brainchild of Albion's Head of Academy Recruitment Steve Hopcroft – himself a childhood resident of Soho - who has worked with volunteer coaches and West Midlands Police to take the project forward and provide new opportunites for young footballers just a stone's throw away from The Hawthorns.

What started with 50 hopefuls signing up at the start of the summer has now grown to more than 80 youngsters playing in four Soho Albion teams from U7s to U10s in the Sandwell Minor League.

And thanks to The Albion Foundation they will all be there on Diversity Day to watch the Baggies take on Watford at The Hawthorns.

"We're really pleased with how it's all progressing," said Hopcroft.

"After a fantastic start, Soho Albion is now a fully formed football club that is running itself. It will continue to be a sustainable club offering football for free.

"All of the lads will be there to watch the Watford game on Saturday which they're all looking forward to!"

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