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Man who puts Messi in shade shows off skills.

FREESTYLE footballer John Farnworth treated Tyneside schoolchildren to a demonstration of his incredible skills.

The multi-world record holder's control of the ball left pupils spellbound as he ran through his array of tricks.

The 32-year-old said: "It has been my career now for 10 years. I've travelled to 40, nearly 50 countries performing.

"When I'm alone with a ball I'm always thinking of new things."

Among John's eight world records is controlling a football dropped from a height of 137ft - topping the benchmarks set by Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Theo Walcott.

He has also completed the London Marathon while juggling a football for the entire 26.2 miles. Next he plans to climb Mount Everest doing the same thing. John was at Boldon School to help launch South Tyneside College's Futsal Scholarship Programme. The small-scale version of football is played with a smaller, heavier ball on a tighter indoor pitch, which helps develop creativity and technique. John, along with superstar players such as Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Neymar, credits the sport with helping him reach where he is today.

The scholarship will give students the chance to develop futsal skills alongside their studies.

Inspiro Education director Graeme Watson said: "The scholarship is just like the ones you see for football, but with futsal. We've given the kids an opportunity to complete a BTEC in sport, but also get the chance to be part of a futsal academy."

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Futsal player and freestyle footballer John Farnworth entertains pupils at Boldon School in South Tyneside Iain Buist

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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Feb 9, 2018
Words:257
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