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Football: Penyffordd carry Welsh flag into Swedish world youth cup tournament

PENYFFORDD Colts U16s are returning to Sweden to settle old scores.

Wales’ only representatives in last season’s Gothia World Youth Cup failed to qualify for the knockout stages.

Penyffordd entered after discovering the tournament through one of the player’s parents, who is Swedish. And although a year has passed, international rules on age groups mean Peny return for this year’s competition in the same age bracket as last time.

The Gothia tournament is huge, with 75 nations represented by 1,570 teams. Last time they were there, Peny were in a group of four but this year they are in a group of five, with two swedish teams, a side from the USA and an indian club.

The opening ceremony takes place in front of more than 50,000 spectators and Penyffordd will fly the Welsh flag and wear special T-shirts with the Welsh dragon on as part of the team parade.

The club has held a number of fundraising events and the squad fly out to Sweden on Sunday to prepare for the tournament, which begins on Monday with the opening ceremony.

Penyffordd coach John Carden said: “The lads finished bottom of the group last year and they want to do a bit better this time.

“We have been playing teams of a higher standard and holding our own this season so hopefully we can climb and qualify in the top two.

“Earlier this year we played Conference South academy team Eastleigh and held them to a 0-0 draw so we are confident this time around.”