AFC Blackpool have already received one fabulous cash windfall this season ... and now want your help to get their hands on an even bigger one.
The Common Edge-based North West Counties League club received a £50,000 grant last month courtesy of the Budweiser Club Futures programme, a scheme backed by FA Cup sponsors Budweiser and the FA to invest £1m in grassroots football over this season and next.
Blackpool beat all the other North West applicants to win the regional prize of £50,000 to be used towards clubhouse and kitchen facilities at their ground.
But that cash injection could be dwarfed by a £100,000 cash investment if the club can win the scheme’s biggest national prize, for which they will compete with the other seven regional winners.
Which of the eight clubs claims the cash prize will be determined by football fans, who can vote for their preferred winner via Facebook.
All eight clubs have made a presentation video to press their claim, and these can be viewed on facebook.com/budweiseruk or facebook.com/thefacup, where you can also cast you vote.
The programme is designed to shine a light on grassroots football an help the chosen teams become more sustainable within the community.
Tommy Baldwin, chairman at AFC Blackpool, said: “Winning this grant is already a massive boost for our club, but winning an additional £100k would mean so much more as this will enable us to provide changing rooms and other facilities for the young players.
“We have 12 Junior teams aged 5-16 who are in desperate need for their own facilities adjoining the pitches. We will also build a hospitality suite for use on match days and available as a community room at other times.”
Budweiser Club Futures ambassador, Alan Pardew, said: “Having started my career at grassroots level, I know just how hard it is to sustain a local club and can appreciate the importance of a programme like Budweiser Club Futures. The clubs have already received a significant amount of money but this injection would be like a huge lottery win for one club.”
It was another high-profile manager and Futures Ambassador, ex-Bolton and Burnley boss Owen Coyle, who presented Baldwin with the £50,000 cheque (above).
The other seven regional winners in competition for the £100,000 grant are Blyth Town FC (North East & Yorkshire), Evergreen (East), Raynes Park Vale (London), Bardon Hill (East Midlands), Pegasus Juniors (West Midlands), South Park (South East), Camelford (South West).