New football goals in Sutton are more than just hot air

Your Local Guardian: Pumped up: Toyin Bakare, Ben Fisher, Noor Husin, John Barfoot and Emily Stanley with the Igoal Deadlinepix SU20644 Pumped up: Toyin Bakare, Ben Fisher, Noor Husin, John Barfoot and Emily Stanley with the Igoal Deadlinepix SU20644

Cup ties between Hackbridge Primary School and Stanley Park Juniors would never normally loom large in the annals of football history.

But last week the two teams made an unlikely entry into the record books after playing the first match in the borough with inflatable goalposts.

Neither has their own pitch and so both fell foul of the decision by Sutton parks service to remove posts from recreation grounds.

Necessity is the mother of invention. Just when staff were considering using jumpers for goalposts, sponsors Redyset offered a solution with a more surreal air.

First there was the iPod and the iPhone, then the iTeDDy and now apparently the Igoal, a set of portable PVC and terelyne posts that can be inflated in a minute and folded into a bag.

Deputy headteacher Sylvia Parker said: "It was the first time the goals had been used by Sutton school teams, and perhaps the way forward for playing the matches later in the season.

"Once, I jumped and broke my nose on the goalpost now I wont break my nose. It is a wicked idea"

Hackbridge Primary School pupil

"Other advantages included playing with goals that had a net attached - the borough ones do not - and also the safety aspect.

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Pupils were bursting with excitement after feeling the benefits of inflation. "I like the goals, it is a new experience. I think it will be better for the goalkeeper," one said.

"Once, I jumped and broke my nose on the goalpost - now I won't break my nose. It is a wicked idea," another concluded.

The football season ended in Sutton parks on March 30, to ensure pitches could be "overseeded" for next year. A council spokeswoman said: "If we have a dry spring and early summer, it can reflect in the standard of pitch we provide the following season, so our window of opportunity is limited."

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