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Rovers players unveil 'Mini Ewood'

12 August 2015

Rovers stars Jason Steele and Matt Kilgallon were the special guests at Blackburn Youth Zone for the officially opening of the charity's Mini Ewood facility.

The Youth Zone renamed its rooftop football pitch to mark the first anniversary of Rovers becoming a Premier Patron.

Mini Ewood is designed to make the Youth Zone's football pitch appear like the famous Ewood Park stadium, complete with fans and pitch-side advertising boards. 

Jason and Matt unveiled the rooftop pitch, before taking part in a penalty shootout competition with local youngsters, who were enjoying the charity's Holiday Club.

BYZ Sports Co-ordinator Ishmail Issat said: "Mini Ewood shows everyone we are strong partners with Rovers and it's great for our young players who now have a permanent crowd cheering them on!"

Acting BYZ CEO Sarah Johns said: "It's fitting that we mark the first anniversary of our partnership by installing our own Ewood Park. Mini Ewood not only shows our partnership with our local club, but creates an inspiring space for our members." 

Matt added: "It's very impressive. I can't believe there's a pitch in the city centre! It's a great facility and it looks like the young kids really love it here and I wish there was something like this when I was younger, because I can't believe how good it is. 

"It's great to have the stand they've got there with the pictures of all the fans, because it gives it a really good atmosphere. I was actually trying to save a few of the penalties, but they got the better of me, so I'm a bit disappointed! But it's all good fun and nice to see that they all love football so much."

Jason added: "It's been brilliant. From the moment you walk in the door and you see the project itself, it's absolutely fantastic for all the kids, especially at this time of year when they're on their holidays and to come up to see the pitch on the rooftop - the Mini Ewood - was brilliant and to see the smiles on their faces is something you can't take away from them.

"When I was younger, you just used to get your ball and go on the local park or the street green, and that's all we used to do, play football from start to finish."

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