Upton Park mosque’s followers pray for England’s football World Cup team

A friendly football match was played to break barriers between members of different ethnic groups in

A friendly football match was played to break barriers between members of different ethnic groups in Upton Park on Saturday. Speaking competitions were held including one on England's chances of winning the World Cup. Pic: Naseem Ahmad Hayat - Credit: Archant

Prayers were said for England’s World Cup team before a friendly football match between different ethnic groups in a bid to break down barriers.

Ahmadiyya Muslim Elders Association. Pic: Naseem Ahmad Hayat

Ahmadiyya Muslim Elders Association. Pic: Naseem Ahmad Hayat - Credit: Archant

Saturday’s match was at The Priory Park Centre yards away from West Ham United’s old Boleyn Ground.

Before the game worshippers and visitors debated England’s chances of lifting the World Cup trophy at the Masjid Baitul Ahad mosque in Upton Park.

Abdul Wadood Khan – regional president of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Elders Association which organised the meet – said: “Everyone wished England well.”

On the friendly, Mr Khan added: “By playing together it created a trust between different ethnicities.

A friendly football match was played to break barriers between members of different ethnic groups in

A friendly football match was played to break barriers between members of different ethnic groups in Upton Park on Saturday. Speaking competitions were held including one on England's chances of winning the World Cup. Pic: Naseem Ahmad Hayat - Credit: Archant

“Sport is a vital tool to get people mixing together.”

In total the Association – which has the motto “Love for all, hatred for none” – said about 150 people turned out for the event with more planned for the future.

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Set up in 1889 in India the Association works to bring different communities together. It opened in the UK in 1913 and claims to have built London’s first mosque.

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