Local primary school children from across Perth and Kinross had a brilliant morning of football as the Tesco Bank Football Challenge visited the area for an action packed festival at St Johnstone’s McDiarmid Park, attended by first team players Dave McKay and Steven Anderson.

Pupils from seven schools are the latest to have taken part in six weeks of coaching with qualified Scottish FA coaches. The sessions have taken place in various parts of the area, from Forgandenny to Methven. The children were excited to see local football stars Dave McKay and Steven Anderson, who posed for pictures and took part in the session.  

Regional festivals are held across the country at high-profile venues including St Mirren Park, Easter Road, and Tynecastle Stadium. A national festival at Hampden Park brings the school year of football to a memorable close.

The Tesco Bank Football Challenge is an eight-year community programme run in partnership with the Scottish FA. The initiative introduces football to Primary Two and Primary Three children (six to eight years old) across Scotland to help get them engage in a healthy and active lifestyle.

The first four years of the programme have been an overwhelming success, with over 82,000 children across more than 2000 primary schools in Scotland taking part. The next four years will focus on giving more children and more schools the opportunity to participate in the programme continuing to grow participation.

Teachers and volunteers also continue to enjoy the Scottish FA’s in-service programme with over 5,000 now trained to support the growth of football in schools.

St Johnstone FC’s Community Coach and ex-Saints player Danny Griffin said:

“Our coaches really enjoyed working with these children over the last six weeks and it has been great to see how much fun they’ve had. Meeting Dave McKay and Steven Anderson has been a great way to reward a fun and hard-working time!”

Adele Mills, Senior Community Investment Manager at Tesco Bank, added:

“It was lovely to see hundreds of children enjoying themselves at McDiarmid Park today at our latest Tesco Bank Football Challenge festival. We’re committed to supporting the communities we serve by providing opportunities for children to get healthy and active, through fun filled festivals like the one in Perth, today.”

The primary schools attending the festival were: Methven, Comrie, Forgandenny, Oakbank, Blackford, Muthill, and Goodlyburn.