Darwen Vale were crowned the undisputed champions of girls football after they finished with a perfect score of 10 wins out of 10.

Schools from across Blackburn and Darwen had taken part in 7-a-side competition held over five weeks in a centralised league on St Bede’s impressive 3G pitches.

Teams played every Wednesday a format where each team played two twenty minute matches per night, meaning every team played each other twice. And week-in, week-out, Vale proved to be the team to beat – or not beat as it turned out!

Vale amassed double the points of their nearest rivals St Wilfrid’s as they rattled in 23 goals and incredible, conceded just four times.

The competition also included St Wildfrid’s, Our Lady and St John, Darwen Aldridge Community Academy and two teams from the host school.

And while it was a wonderful all-round team display, Darwen Vale’s victory was in no small part down to their goalkeeper and inspirational captain Adina Browne who was only beaten on four occasions in ten matches – and keeping seven clean sheets.

And the school’s achievement was all the more impressive due to the fact that the same seven girls played every minute of every fixture. Along with captain Browne the team included Amy Billington, Hollie Iglesias, Chantelle Mellor, Gemma Seddon, Marley Slater and Sophie Aspin.

Whilst Darwen Vale’s place at the top of the league was almost a certainty going into the last round of fixtures, the same couldn’t be said for who finished second and third – with St Bede’s A and St Wilfrid’s battling it out for the runners-up spot.

And in the end, it was only goal difference that separated them as both teams And it was St Wilfrid’s proved to have the edge with a goal difference of plus six while a heavy defeat to an improved Our Lady & St John side meant that St Bede’s ‘A’ finished with a goal difference of minus one. Our Lady & St John improved week on week and, after a slow start, won their last three games to finish in 4th place with 12 points, A St Bede’s ‘B’ team made up mainly of year 9 and 10 girls finished 5th on 11 points with Darwen Academy again using mainly Year 10 pupils finishing 6th.

Andrew Mercer, school games organiser, was delighted to see the Darwen Vale players thank their coach Vikki Eastwood.

He said: “It was great to see the girls thank their coach for all she has done for them during the five years they have been at Darwen Vale. The respect and fondness the players had for Ms Eastwood was evident throughout the duration of the competition.”

He added: “I would like to thank St Bede’s High for allowing us to use their excellent facilities and the pupils from St Bede’s who gave up their time to referee the matches in particular Ed Rushworth who was present every week. “Girl’s football is one of the fastest growing sports in the country and it is particularly strong in the borough, both St Wilfrid’s and St Bede’s have produced national champion teams within the last three years. “The standard on display was very impressive and games were played in a refreshingly good spirit.”