London Blitz seeking help to fund European Champions League challenge in Serbia
- Credit: Archant
London Blitz American Football club are in a race against time to keep their appointment with possible Champions League glory.
The Finsbury Park-based amateur club are still more than £4,000 shy of a £10,000 target needed to help send their squad – which includes students, personal trainers, bar tenders, teachers, engineers and IT workers – to the prestigious event in Serbia on July 25.
Chairman Ed Morgan, the players and staff had been expecting the finals of the tournament to be much closer to home, but have thrown themselves into fundraising mode to keep their hopes of glory on track.
To add insult to injury, not showing up would result in a fine from the organisers, so failure to meet the target is not an option.
In addition to fundraising efforts of their own, including a club day involving team games and a race night, Morgan set up a GoFundMe fundraising page in search of the £10,000 he estimates to be half the cost of the trip.
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He admits, though, that after a promising start the pledges have stalled.
“We had a really good initial push, but we are currently at £5,765, so still more than £4,000 short,” said Morgan.
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“We thought wins against Spain and France’s top teams had got us through to the final tournament somewhere in Western Europe until the finals were awarded to Belgrade!
“As an amateur team without a sponsor this year, our players and coaches bear all the costs of competition and the Eastern bloc has really got us stumped – and this is where we need the help [from] our friends, family and supporters!
“We won’t be travelling flash harry style and all our players and coaches will still be paying but we really need help to cover the costs as we traipse 1,500 miles across Europe.”
Morgan and co originally intended to make the trek on a team bus, but those plans were shelved when they were quoted £16,000 for the privilege.
They have cut costs by opting to fly, but every penny counts and any shortfall certainly won’t be coming out of the chairman’s pocket.
“God no,” added Morgan. “I’m no Jack Walker. I used to play for this team and our whole set- up is run by volunteers, even though it feels like a business sometimes.
“Any gap in funding will have to be made up by the players.”
Anyone wanting to contribute to the fundraising effort or find out more information can visit www.gofundme.com/vhjb3vg