2021 Father Christmas Cup set to offer comfort and financial aid to the family of a well-loved soccer-loving teacher

ATLANTA, GEORGIA—The local soccer community here is set to offer 101 percent support to the 2021 Father Christmas Cup scheduled on December 11 at the Atlanta Silverbacks Park.
According to reports, one of the beneficiaries of the annual soccer fundraiser, held each December to provide comfort and financial support for local Atlanta families that will be missing a parent for the first time over the holiday period is the family of a well-loved soccer-loving teacher who died on August 11, 2021.
Part of the proceeds of the well-loved soccer fundraiser will go to the family of Brian K. Jackson who began his career as a lawyer but ended up as a teacher for 19 years at Woodward Academy. Jackson was a long-time History teacher at the said educational institution where he is well-loved by his students.
With his death, Jackson left behind his wife of 19 years, Gina Calloway, 3 daughters-Angelena, Siena, Gisele Jackson, his mother and father-Doris Jackson and Joseph Jackson, step-father- Bernard Coachman, sisters-Kelly McCray, Carmen Dean, Tia Jackson, sister cousin-Barbara Raines, brothers-Kenneth Jackson, who preceded him in death, Malcolm and Peter Jackson and a host of uncles, aunts, cousins, nieces, nephews, and dear friends.
The organizers of the 2021 Father Christmas Cup want to ease the pain of the family left behind by Jackson by offering them comfort and some financial aid from this widely popular soccer fundraiser.
Sources said Jackson’s daughter plays soccer on the same team as Stevie Renwick’s daughter Riley which is coached by Campbell Chapman.
The Jackson family is also a big part of the local soccer community.
In this year’s edition of the Father Christmas Cup, Campbell’s team has a league game in the afternoon on December 11th, with a 30 min 8 v 8 squad game in Jackson’s honor at 10.30 am at the Stadium Field A.
The team will also be present for the Memorial ceremony at 11.30 am with the family.
This year’s Father Christmas Cup is being supported by the Atlanta United Foundation.
The United Foundation is a platinum sponsor of the annual soccer fundraiser held each December.
Aside from fun and games, the event will also memorialize those active in our soccer community that has passed within the previous 12 months.
The Atlanta Silverbacks organization has been a long-time sponsor of the event, generously donating
field space to host both a youth and adult soccer tournament.
Since this worthwhile event began, funds are generated from player participation donations, a sponsored player shirt, raffle proceeds, private donations made through the Father Christmas Cup website, and donations on the day of the event itself.

History and Origin of The Father Christmas Cup


The Father Christmas Cup came to be as a result of a discussion one night in September 2003 between a group of friends in a local pub, what was then the old Fado Fado, in the Buckhead bar district of Atlanta Georgia.
The discussion centered on the casualties from the war in Iraq and how that Christmas a family would be in mourning for a father missing for the first time during the Holiday season.


One of the groups recalled how soccer and war had been intertwined throughout the ages and we all remembered how during World War I, it was often cited that on Christmas Eve in 1915 a truce was struck between the Germans and the English to celebrate Christmas. The truce lasted Christmas Day and part of the following day- Boxing Day- and how an impromptu soccer game ensued in no-man’s land between the trenches.
The idea came about to hold a soccer match as a fundraiser to help a family that was missing their father for the first time. The first Father Christmas Cup has played in December 2003 and funds raised were donated anonymously to a soldier’s family.

A Father Christmas Cup Story

Earlier last year, Denzel Clark, a former student at Greater Atlanta Christian School and a talented soccer player, unfortunately, lost his mother and father in what can only be described as tragic circumstances. At the time, Denzel was playing Division 1 soccer at Gardner-Webb University in NC and The Father Christmas Cup was able to make a small contribution towards some of the funeral costs. Despite all the difficulties, Denzel himself still graduated from Gardner-Webb and continued to excel on the soccer field.
Denzel’s high school friend and fellow soccer teammate, Stewart Abrahart, invited him to play in The Father Christmas Cup as part of the Global Image Sports (GIS) team, one of the main sponsors of the event. This turned out to be a serendipitous event for Denzel but also became a heartwarming Christmas story about the hope of a brighter future for the family.
As luck would have it, The GIS team was drawn in the same section of the competition as the shirt sponsor, Atlanta United FC, (part of the new Atlanta MLS franchise), who entered a strong team featuring some pro players as well as AUFC President Darren Eales and Technical Director and former US Men’s National Team Captain Carlos Bocanegra.
It was Denzel’s overhead bicycle kick that caught the eye of recently appointed AUFC Youth Soccer Director Tony Annan. As a result, Tony helped arrange a trial with San Antonio FC, a professional soccer team based in San Antonio, Texas that will make their debut in the United Soccer League ahead of the 2016 season. GIS helped Denzel with his travel expenses and he reports that so far, everything has gone well.
Everyone from the Father Christmas Cup and the extensive soccer community across the region is pulling for Denzel in the hope that his Christmas wish comes true. Whatever the outcome of his two-week trial, however – this story serves to show that there will always be positive opportunities ready to come along and provide some hope where it is needed.
We’ll keep you posted on the story here –

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2015 FX Cup – Our Best Year Yet

The 2015 Father Christmas Cup is in the books and we are proud to announce that, for the first time ever, we topped $50,000!

A big “THANK YOU” goes out to the Atlanta soccer community and the continued generosity of all the players and spectators.

We’d also like to formally thank ALL of our corporate sponsors this year. Their collective support resulted in an increase of 30% for our receipts. A special s/o goes to the following –


Atlanta Silverbacks once again donated 100% of all the field time, ensuring that we have a place to host over 1,000 players in the adult co-ed league, youth league and, newly added, all-women’s league.

Atlanta Silverbacks Park
Atlanta Silverbacks Park

Global Image Sports (a sports management company that provides opportunities and experiences via the formation of strategic partnerships in the sports industry) contributed all of the signed, professional jerseys from across the EPL and La Liga -generating hundreds of dollars and a lot of excitement in our online silent auction!

Arsenal FC Signed Jersey
Arsenal FC Signed Jersey

NEW THIS YEAR: The FX CUP stepped up its digital game! Partnering with FreshTix, an Atlanta based ticketing platform, players were able to register online as well as purchase tickets to the raffle for the first time since the very first Cup was hosted in 2003!

Last, but certainly not least, Atlanta United FC became our anchor corporate sponsor for the first time …not to mention, entered a team which included Techincal Director, Carlos Bocanegra and President, Darren Eales. We all believe strongly that the FX Cup is so much more than winning any one game but, no doubt, AUFC will be the team to beat in 2016!

Atlanta United FC
Atlanta United FC

Proudly, our all-volunteer based organization is able to disburse close to 97% of the funds raised to Atlanta families missing a parent for the first time at Christmas.

This year’s beneficiaries were all very appreciative and all have requested that we share that with everyone involved.

The provisional date for the 2016 FX Cup is December 17th. We hope you’ll keep up with us in the meantime on –

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