doc

FA Cup stars Darren Anderton and John Barnes are bringing the famous trophy to Bournemouth on Thursday to launch a national football skills contest.

Fans and residents will get a chance to meet and have their picture taken with the former England internationals and the cup itself at the Goldsands Stadium at the launch of the Beko Keppy-Uppy Challenge, and can pit their skills against the pros.

Also at the event, held between 2-5pm, will be current keepy-uppy world record holder Dan Magness, who achieved his title by keeping a ball off the ground for a whopping 26 hours.

Mr Magness also holds the record for the longest distance travelled while doing keepy-uppy, managing 36 miles.

AFC Bournemouth take on Barnes’ former club Liverpool in their FA Cup showdown this weekend.

Spurs and Cherries veteran Anderton said: “Beko bringing The FA Cup to Bournemouth ahead of our big match this weekend is fantastic and will generate real excitement in the area amongst fans.

“This challenge is a great way to get the whole family involved in The FA Cup.”

Cherries legend Steve Fletcher said: “Hopefully the fans make the most of the chance to come to the stadium to see the trophy and meet Darren Anderton and John Barnes. These opportunities don’t come round very often, so we should try and enjoy every minute of it.

“You can really sense that there’s a buzz around the town with Liverpool coming down this weekend.

“It’s a dream for the supporters and the players to have some of the best players in the world coming to Dean Court.”

Both Anderton and Mr Magness are visiting Bournemouth School in East Way with the cup tomorrow morning, where the students will be practising their keepy-uppy skills in preparation for the contest.

The contest is open for everyone to enter, whether as an individual, club, or school.

Prizes include FA Cup Final tickets and team training at The FA’s National Football Centre, St George’s Park.

In addition, Beko will donate to its charity partner Barnardo’s for every entry received.