Atomic Kitten, Idlewild, Leeroy Thornhill, Reef, the ubiquitous Darius... they all spent their Sunday playing footie, with varying degrees of competence...

Pop veterans PAUL HARDCASTLE and MARK OWEN’s superior ball skills won the day at the celebrity-studded NME CARLING CUP yesterday (February 4), when their MELLOW YELLOW team thrashed TERRORVISION 6-4 in the final of the five-a-side extravaganza.

Managed by ex-Prodigy, now Flightcrank mainman, Leeroy Thornhill, the team stormed through an afternoon of top footie action, which saw brand new Number One stars Atomic Kitten join members of Reef, Idlewild, Crashland and stars from ‘Big Brother’ and ‘Emmerdale’ on the pitch at Crystal Palace in London to raise funds for the NSPCC.

The event opened with ‘Popstars’ reject Darius singing the National Anthem, and he was clearly moved by the honour. Then the action began, with special trophies being handed out as the afternoon progressed for the top players, all-round good-eggs and the stars who managed to beat the goalie in penalty shoot-outs.

Some of the stars had struggled through hangovers to be there, and the strain was showing on Dominic Greensmith from Reef’s face, as his team plunged out. Guitarist Rod Jones and drummer Colin Newton from Idlewild, who took time out from writing and recording their next album, split into rival teams, Dutch Courage and Green Daze respectively.

Throughout the afternoon, Leeroy, who is about to start rehearsals for his first Flightcrank shows currently in the process of being confirmed, was on positive form, and his optimism proved to be right, scooping the coveted trophy at the end of the day.

NME.COM was on hand to capture the on-pitch action and chat with the stars and our full video report will be up on the site tomorrow .

So to see what captain of the victors Leeroy, Tony Wright from valiant losers in the final Terrorvision, the inescapable Darius, a jubilant Liz McLarnon from Atomic Kitten and Idlewild’s Rod Jones and Colin Newton had to say, click back on NME.COM tomorrow morning (February 6).