Sunderland trio help inspire the next generation ahead of Porto cup final

Joel Asoro, Elliot Embleton and captain Ethan Robson surprised local schoolchildren in Whitburn ahead of the Porto clash
Joel Asoro, Elliot Embleton and captain Ethan Robson surprised local schoolchildren in Whitburn ahead of the Porto clash
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Sunderland youngsters Joel Asoro, Elliot Embleton and captain Ethan Robson helped pass on tips to the next generation ahead of a major European final.

The trio paid the surprise visit to Marsden Primary School, in Whitburn, Sunderland, ahead of Wednesday night's Premier League International Cup final against Porto at the Stadium of Light.

Joel Asoro, Elliot Embleton and captain Ethan Robson surprised local schoolchildren in Whitburn ahead of the Porto clash

Joel Asoro, Elliot Embleton and captain Ethan Robson surprised local schoolchildren in Whitburn ahead of the Porto clash

The Young Cats were on hand to greet youngsters and take part in a PE session, to help raise awareness of the Premier League’s Primary Stars campaign, which aims to encourage young children aged between 8-11 to play football in Primary Schools.

Sunderland Under-23s entertain the Portuguese outfit tomorrow night (KO 7pm) and more than 20,000 fans are expected to back the team - and they will become the first Sunderland Under-23 side to play in the final of European competition.

Skipper Ethan Robson believes it will be a momentous occasion, and hopes his team can make their mark in the history books.

He said: "It’s a great achievement from the lads to get to the final and there’s a sense of pride from everyone in what we have achieved.

"Obviously, we’ll be a bit nervous but we’ve a good game plan and we’ll be ready on the night to go and get the win.

"To have so many fans there is absolutely brilliant and we’re just really looking forward to the game now."

Midfielder Elliot Embleton echoed the thoughts of his captain and said he was excited and ready to go: "I just can’t wait for the game to come around now to be honest, and hopefully we can get the win.

"It’s the biggest crowd I’ve played in front of and it will be a great experience.

"We’ve beaten some good sides along the way and we are confident we can do it again."

Premier League Primary Stars uses the appeal of the Premier League and professional football clubs to inspire children to learn, be active and develop important life skills.

Available to every primary school in England and Wales, it inspires girls and boys aged 5-11 in the classroom, the playground and on the sports field.

Tickets for the final against Porto are free of charge but supporters must secure them in advance of the day of the game, from the Stadium of Light ticket office until 5pm on Wednesday.

There will also be cash turnstiles in operation.