London Blitz to face the finest in Europe after cup triumph
London Blitz chairman Robin Pierce believes the club have proved the doubters wrong by defeating Serbian outfit Kragujevac Wild Boars to win the EFAF Cup on Saturday.
National champions Blitz won the first European trophy in their 16-year history at Finsbury Park, a remarkable achievement for an amateur side against a semi-professional team - and they now qualify for next season’s top European competition, the European Football League.
Pierce is dedicating the resounding 29-7 victory to the hard work put in by the club’s players and staff since its formation in 1995, and says they are now ready to make the next step up.
“It is an immense achievement - the pinnacle of our performances over the past few years,” said the chairman. “A lot of clubs, certainly in the United Kingdom, said we would never win a European trophy without either a major sponsor or by importing players. To prove them wrong, and to go from where we were a few years ago to where we are now, is incredible.
“We’ve done it all on a budget. We can’t pay our players because of the British American Football Association rules, so all the money we made on the day goes back into the club.
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“You don’t win money for a tournament like this – we had to pay for our own trophy - so we’ve had to rely on the odd donation and the help of the league, for which we are very thankful.
“Hopefully this will raise our profile a little further. We hold a recruitment camp every winter where anyone is welcome to come down for trials. We don’t go poaching players from other clubs, that isn’t our style. We want to recruit youngsters and grow internally, which has worked so far.
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“We’ve won three national championships, but this will be another big step up, against semi-professional players. We have to get faster and stronger, but I fully believe that we have the best coaching staff and the best group of players in the UK, so I know we’re ready.”
Head Coach Mark Moss said: “This is a huge result for the club.
“We have proved that this is not the case and that dedicated amateur players can compete at this level. I’m proud of the whole organisation and where we have got to.”