Prince William to visit England’s national football centre to mark milestone anniversary


The newly-made Prince of Wales will visit St George’s Park to celebrate its tenth anniversary as the home of football.

It said the prince would “take time to speak with England manager Gareth Southgate to understand the importance of St George’s Park in the national team’s preparation” for the upcoming World Cup in Qatar.

Kensington Palace said the trip would “reflect the diversity of the sport”, with Prince William meeting para-footballers, young footballers from the Burton upon Trent region and competitors from this year’s Street Child World Cup.

Built in 2012 in 330 acres of Staffordshire countryside, St George’s Park is the home of England’s national football teams.

It boasts fourteen outdoor pitches, including one that is a replica of the surface at Wembley.

William FA breaker

William will visit the national football centre to mark its tenth anniversary (Image: Getty)

The centre is where the national teams train before tournaments, and was a base for the women’s team this summer as they progressed to victory in the Euros.

Kensington Palace said it had also “supported a huge breadth of grassroots engagement alongside professional training, sports science and coach education”.

It said the Prince of Wales would also meet supporting staff at the facility “to understand their particular importance” to St George’s Park’s history.

The statement praised them, saying: “None of the activity that takes place at St George’s Park would be possible without the committed work of countless backroom staff, whether that be coaching teams, administrative support, groundskeepers, kitmen, programme coordinators, outreach officers, wardens, chefs, physios – the list goes on.”

William kicking a football

Prince William: ‘Football is a game I love playing and watching’ (Image: Getty)

Lionesses St George's Park

St George’s Park was a base for the Lionesses this summer as they progressed to victory in the Euros (Image: Getty)

The heir apparent became the ceremonial head of the FA in May 2006, a position which has been held by royals since 1939.

At the time, the prince said: “Football is a game I love playing and watching. It is also the national sport and generates extraordinary passions among millions of people.”

The self-professed Aston Villa fan has since been present at many major tournament matches, including England’s historic win against Germany at Wembley last year, as well as the men’s Euros final.

Earlier this summer, he was seen cheering on the Lionesses ahead of their championship-clinching victory with daughter, Princess Charlotte.

William Charlotte Lionesses

William cheered the Lionesses on for their championship-clinching victory with Princess Charlotte (Image: Twitter/Kensington Palace)

William Wembley England Germany

He was present at major tournament matches including England’s historic win against Germany (Image: Getty)

He told the women’s football team that “the whole nation couldn’t be prouder of you all. Wonderful to see history in the making tonight at Wembley”.

Before the tournament had started, Prince William made a visit to St George’s Park to meet the Lionesses and manager Sarina Wiegman.

And, at the final on July 31, he was there to congratulate the team after winning 2-1 in extra time with their well-deserved trophy.


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