Teenager with cerebral palsy sets up football team

‘Adversity United’ is the name of a football team set up by a teenager living with cerebral palsy.

Cameron Osburn has been a lifelong football fan and joined a local team at the age of eight. However, the experience was not a happy one as he was never picked to play in matches and “felt excluded from all the other players”.

Eventually he joined a disability football team in York, which gave him the idea of setting up his own and, at the age of 16, Adversity United was born.

Explaining his motivation for setting up the squad, Cameron says: “I discovered my urge to coach football and decided to set up and coach my own football club for young children with disabilities as I didn’t have any opportunity to play on a fair level playing field.”

The team is aimed at boys and girls in the six to twelve age bracket, who are living with “social, behavioural, physical or cerebral challenges”. There are presently around 14 players who meet up to practice regularly and the endeavour has resulted in Cameron being shortlisted for a National Diversity Award.

With Adversity United taking off in the way it has, he is now hoping to expand training sessions to include teenagers.

Cameron says: “I would say we need to create more opportunities in sport for young people with disabilities as there isn’t enough. I hope that I can inspire many others to help get more young people with disabilities involved in sport.”

He is also undertaking gym and individual training to improve his own skills as a footballer, with his aim being to take his football to the next level and play for the England U21’s Cerebral Palsy squad.

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