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Dana Alasad and Abrar bin Hussain wrote this account of the charity football tournament between teams from the English for University Study Programme and the International Foundation Programme, which featured in the gair rhydd, Cardiff University Students' Union weekly newspaper.
Photo by Maryam Alsefri
On Sunday 16th March, students and staff from the English Language Programmes department contested their annual charity football tournament. The Foundation Programme continued their dominance over the EFUS Programme as Patrick Okolo led IFP Hooligans Utd to a deserved victory. International students from Kuwait, Jordan, the Philippines, Russia, Libya, Saudi Arabia, Oman and Nigeria demonstrated their generosity and community spirit, giving their all to raise money for the Somerset Flood Relief Fund, a charity supporting people affected by the recent flooding around the UK.
IFP Hooligans Utd emerged as the early favourites for the trophy, beating EFUS B 3-0 with goals from Patrick, Khalifah Almulla and Azzan Aladawi. Next, the EFUS A team beat Faisal’s Foundation team, Hussain Al Zaidi securing the points with a late tap-in. The two EFUS teams then turned from allies to rivals but EFUS A were obviously tired from their earlier exertions, going down to a shock 3-0 defeat. There were more surprises to come, with Faisal’s Foundation team defeating IFP Hooligans. However, they then went on to lose to EFUS B in a game where the teachers made their mark – Sam missing an open goal before Shaun scored the winner.
The final came down to IFP Hooligans and EFUS B. Maryam Saeed opened the scoring for EFUS B before Azzan equalised for IFP despite some backs-to-the-wall defending. The title was to be decided on penalties. In a tense shoot-out, all the Foundation players expertly dispatched their kicks despite Abdulrahman Alnassar’s best efforts in goal. In contrast, Nasser Murad was the only EFUS player to score as Naif Alsefri and Geraint saw their spot-kicks by Aqueel Mohammed. Finally, it was left to EFUS Programme manager, Shaun, to sky the final penalty over the bar and hand victory to IFP Hooligans.
Students and teachers from both English Language programmes who came to support the players were led in their cheerleading efforts by Dana Alasad and Abrar bin Hussain. They also contributed to the fundraising effort by participating in a raffle and other competitions. In the end, a grand total of £247 was raised. This money will go towards providing emergency grants for people whose homes and possessions have been damaged by flood water, farmers whose crops have been destroyed and workers whose livelihoods have been affected. This represents a fantastic effort by everyone in the English Language Programmes department, who are now looking forward to next year’s tournament, in which the EFUS Programme will aim to exact their revenge.
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