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Cambridge United supporting twins surprised live on BBC One’s The One Show by CUP26 trophy news

Eight-year-old twins William and Oliver - who together scored an incredible 629 goals for Cambridge United as part of football’s climate tournament CUP26 - were tonight (Wednesday, November 3) surprised live on TV, when BBC1’s The One Show revealed they would be presenting the CUP26 trophy to Cambridge United on the pitch at the club’s next home game.

Eight-year-old twins William and Oliver. Picture: Helen Croughton
Eight-year-old twins William and Oliver. Picture: Helen Croughton

The boys were the top scorers for Cambridge United - and the second highest in the UK - raking in goals by taking green action to help protect the planet.

During the eight-week tournament they took on numerous green challenges, including going on walks, going litter picking, kicking rubbish into the recycling bin, hanging up their washing instead of using the tumble dryer, taking photographs of bugs and making a bird feeder.

Presenters ex-Arsenal player Alex Scott and Gethin Jones congratulated the boys, showed them the trophy, and then revealed the youngsters had been invited by Cambridge United to present the trophy to the players.

As well as reducing their own carbon footprint, the boys have helped save an area of forest the size of 1,000 football pitches in the Democratic Republic of Congo. This is thanks to a donation to Rainforest Trust UK made by CUP26 organisers Planet Super League in the name of trophy-winners Cambridge United.

William, 8, who plays for Cambridge United’s Under-9 team, said: “I thought we should get involved because I really like nature and was hearing on the news that lots of animals have become extinct.

“I saw lots of CUP26 activities I would enjoy, so I just did loads. I feel really excited we won because it makes Cambridge United a more famous club. It makes me feel a bit shocked they’ve beaten all these Premier League teams. If more people do CUP26 in the future, then the more animals and nature there’ll be - we need nature to survive.”

Eight-year-old twins William and Oliver. Picture: Helen Croughton
Eight-year-old twins William and Oliver. Picture: Helen Croughton

Oliver, also 8, said: “I really enjoyed CUP26, because I really like going on walks, helping save nature and spending time with my family. It’s made me more interested in climate, because I understand more about the effects of climate change.

“People at the climate change conference need to start trying to save the planet. They need to stop people cutting down trees. I’m proud of what we’ve done - it makes me feel happy to know I’m saving the planet.”

Cambridge United were named as CUP26 winners today at COP26, where world leaders continue to debate commitments to combat climate change. The club beat eight other finalists in a dramatic week of green action, including Arsenal, Spurs, Fulham and Aston Villa.

Ian Mather, Cambridge United CEO, said: “We are delighted to win the CUP26 competition but the real winner here was the planet. Through the power of football we got schools, staff, fans and the local community involved and we raised awareness of what everyone can do to combat climate change.

“We held a Planet Super League day at our recent game against Wimbledon, where fans completed environmentally-friendly activities at the stadium. Alongside football clubs across the UK we engage with our communities in a range of ways, including disability sport and mental health activities, which make a real difference to the lives of so many people.

“It is this connectivity to the community that makes the UK football pyramid of clubs such a valuable asset and we are delighted to have used this power for such for important cause.”

CUP26 is powered by Planet Super League, which engages families to take action against climate change through football, and Count Us In, a global movement of people taking practical steps to protect what they love from climate change.

Fans score goals for their clubs by taking green actions. Since the tournament’s launch in early September, more than 27,500 goals have been registered and verified, accounting for over 14,300 climate actions.

This has reduced carbon emissions by 113,000 kg and equates to planting 6,450 trees.

Read more

Cambridge United beat Arsenal, Fulham and Aston Villa to win Planet Super League CUP26 Trophy

My hopes and aspirations as I attend COP26, by University of Cambridge’s Dr Antoinette Nestor

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