Tag: the FA


Have fun, make friends, play football

The Football Association and SSE have teamed up to launch a new initiative in 2017, SSE Wildcats, designed to inspire girls aged between 5-11 to be involved in the sport.

SSE Wildcats Girls’ Football Clubs provide girls with regular opportunities to play football and take part in organised sessions in a fun and engaging environment created exclusively for girls. 200 clubs have been established across England throughout the spring and summer.*

The sessions take place on a weekly basis, either after school or at weekends, subject to the local organiser. They will provide a safe environment where girls with no football experience can; have fun engaging with sport, develop fundamental skills, try a variety of sessions, learn new things and create foundations for a lifelong love of sport.

Alongside the football for girls activities, there will also be opportunities for the attending parents, carers and siblings to engage with sport in ‘Family Sessions’, e.g. Soccercise/Walking football at the same time.

Each SSE Wildcats club will be run in conjunction with local County FAs and utilising qualified coaches and local facilities to offer girls a location nearby where they can get involved.

SSE Wildcats has been established in partnership with SSE, supporters of girls’ football participation and sponsor of the SSE Women’s FA Cup, with support from UEFA, FIFA and The Youth Sport Trust.



How to prevent scorelines of 13-0, 19-1 and 27-0 in youth football was the subject of a recent blog by Jack Walton, FA regional coach development manager.

In the article, Jack stresses the importance of creating competitive balance in youth football to ensure an enjoyable, equal and beneficial learning experience for all involved.
Here, we asked Jack for his 5 top tips for coaches to use to prevent mismatched fixtures.

Continue reading “WHO BENEFITS IF YOU WIN 13-0?”


Managing player behaviour

Understanding what young players want from their grassroots football experience can help prevent poor behaviour, writes FA county coach developer, Mike Antrobus.

Poor player behaviour at training or matchday is often caused by boredom, the desire for attention, or the practice activity being pitched too hard or easy.


80 Leagues meet at the National Youth League conference.

Delegates from youth leagues all over the country will unite at St. George’s Park this weekend to explore how best to develop player-centred environments to create prime football experiences.

Continue reading “80 Leagues meet at the National Youth League conference.”


It’s difficult now in 2016 to remember a time when there was no Premier league, kids of today will assume it has always been this way, I can assure you that I for one am unfortunately old enough to remember when the whole league system was united and money was shared.

So we look back now and consider…

Has the Premier league failed to live up to its founding principles??

Good question, let’s go back to 1992 when the elite clubs fought to  have a breakaway league, they said;



Is the FA preparing to take the first step towards equipping grassroots referees with body cameras in an attempt to combat abuse towards game officials.

With Referees leaving the game in substantial numbers and those remaining complaining of regular verbal and physical abuse.


Sports minister warns government may legislate to reform the FA

Grassroots have stated for many years now that the FA is not representative enough when it comes to Grassroots Football, the warning signs have been there for many years.

Since the formation of the Premier League, grassroots football has felt more and more isolated, and the gulf between the professional game and grassroots game seems at an all time high.

Sports Minister Tracey Crouch

Tracey Crouch, the sports minister has now stated that  the government are considering passing a law to force the Football Association to reform if it has not reorganised its council and board by April.

Previous high profile former FA chairman and Prince William have all recently spoken out about the need for the FA to reform and be more representative of the game and the people it represents.

The FA is on notice that it will lose £30m public funding for grassroots football via Sport England and not receive support for any future World Cup bid if a reformed board and council are not delivered, Crouch told the select committee.

See the full list of FA council members HERE


The FA Peoples Cup is BACK….Enter HERE for FREE

It’s just a kickabout. Said no one, ever.

The FA People’s Cup returns for a third year – bigger and better than ever before. Run in partnership with BBC Get Inspired, The FA People’s Cup is the biggest amateur 5 a-side competition in the country.

It’s FREE TO ENTER and welcomes male, female and disability players across 16 categories – ranging from U14s, through to veterans (over-35s).

Register your team today to guarantee your home ground and team name. Absolutely Fabregas FC won’t stay around for too long!

The cup run starts on Friday 24 February through to Sunday 26 February 2017 – so make sure you’ve got your name on the teamsheet.

Enter your team HERE


A statement from The FA’s Sue Ravenlaw on Andy Woodward’s disclosure of sexual abuse

Sue Ravenlaw, The FA’s head of equality and safeguarding, said:-

“Reading Andy Woodward’s story in The Guardian was heartbreaking and we applaud his immense courage in coming forward to speak about the horrific abuse he suffered.

“Barry Bennell remains permanently suspended from football, in line with our procedures.

“The FA takes all matters of safeguarding and child protection seriously and we encourage anyone who may have experienced or is experiencing abuse in football, to contact the NSPCC’s confidential 24 hour helpline on 0808 800 5000 or Child Line for children and young people 0800 1111.

“We’ve worked with the NSPCC for 16 years and we know how important it is for victims of abuse to be guided to where they can receive independent, confidential support from trained professionals.

“Important information on how to report any concerns about a child’s welfare in football can be found here.

“Reports can be made via designated safeguarding officers, direct to the professional who work at The FA or via statutory agencies and the NSPCC.

“In conjunction with the Premier League, English Football League and County FAs, we’ve been working to build fun and safe environments for children and young people to participate in. The FA and the football bodies do not tolerate any form of bullying and or abuse in football.

“Criminal record checks are required for those in regulated activity with children, in line with legislation and FA Regulations. More than 35,000 people go through The FA’s safeguarding children awareness workshop, or tailored training every season and we require every club or league with affiliated teams who are U18, to have a named, trained designated safeguarding officer, who has been criminal record checked.”

Referring a concern can be done via your club, league or County FA – all will have a Designated Safeguarding Officer (DSO), trained by The FA. Alternatively, you can email them directly via safeguarding@thefa.com.


Investment in coaches or facilities, What would be your priority??

I was wondering what people’s thoughts were on where the priority for investment should be. Recently I’ve seen many few posts about mini soccer being played indoors in the winter or even converting to Futsal.

I’ve seen some good points made, and some points I don’t agree with on this debate. A few years ago when the FA announced a new blue print for mini soccer, I like a lot of people was encouraged by the plans and ideas. People involved within grassroots football, from mini soccer to semi pro standard were impressed that after decades of minimum funding, we would be part a promising future.

Design and print yours for FREE
Design and print yours for FREE

The promise of higher standards of coaching, better facilities leading to more promising children coming through. I feel that what was set by the FA has made no improvement at all because the plans were flawed from the start. The FA chose to copy the Dutch way of coaching total football, which in my case was out dated and then tried to add tiki taka, which again I feel is becoming out dated.

The FA focused on getting coaches qualified to a minimum stage of level 1 and 2 coaching. My personal view on this is its a way for the FA to generate income and not in the best interests of the sport. For example in almost all walks of life there are more than 1 organisation to buy a service from in this case a coaching course, however to be involved in the sport the one recognised qualifications are FA ones, who set the prices!! If there were a few competing organisations the standard would increase and the price would decrease.


I think the FA should invest money into facilities and also were applicable subsidise the cheaper hiring costs of expensive facilities for teams and parents. The Parklike project in principle is great however it will only benefit a minority of the country.

What’s the point of teaching coaches to coach to a higher standard if the facilities are to a worsening standard?  Better facilities are too expensive and in winter months due to the British climate games a are constantly called off. If the FA and local professional clubs help to upgrade facilities, ie better maintained pitches and an outdoor 3G, all weather pitch for all kids teams, training wouldn’t get affected, children can train and experience playing football in different conditions and it would help motivate coaches and teams maintaining higher standards.

I’m not a fan of moving mini soccer away from the winter as football in this country has always been played at this time of the year at all levels. I really believe we can improve facilities, and give every club access to an all weather pitch. These are only my opinions I would like to know what other people think ……



Outrage – FIFA ban England and Scotland wearing Poppies!!!!

Veterans groups are outraged and believe the two Football Associations should stand up to football’s governing body for the World Cup qualifier on Armistace Day

FIFA has banned poppies from being worn by England and Scotland players at next week’s World Cup qualifier at Wembley.

Football’s governing body said the symbol of memorial is a political statement and cannot be worn on shirts for the game which falls on Armistice Day.

Its rules decree shirts should not carry political, religious or commercial messages.

But the move – which comes five years after England were given a poppy ban in a game against Spain on the eve of Remembrance Sunday – has caused fury among some fans.

Falklands veteran Simon Weston said the FA should risk a potential fine than sacrifice honouring ­British troops for a second time.


He said: “The FAs of both ­Scotland and England should stand up and be counted.”

“Both those countries took part in both World Wars and should take the lead. They should pay any fine has to give them. This is not a political gesture.”

The Royal British Legion added: “We see no reason why the poppy should be banned as it is not a political symbol.”


Credit story to The Mirror

Want to be a referee?

Why referee?


Refereeing is a great way to be involved in football. There are opportunities for everyone, whether you only want to referee at your local club or progress to the international stage. It gives you the opportunity to remain active in the game following injury or retirement, to make new and lasting friends within the game and to play a huge role in ensuring the players enjoy their match day experience.  


There has never been a better time to be a referee in England. And remember…it can be great fun!



How do I get started?


If you want to qualify as a referee, you will need to be at least 14-years-old, live in England and successfully complete the FA Referee Course.  


To attend an FA referee course you will need to contact a member of the referee development team at your local County Football Association or visit their website to find a course near you.


What are the Laws of the Game?


The Laws of the Game for 11-a-side football are set by The International Football Association Board (IFAB), which features representatives from FIFA, The Football Association, The Football Association of Wales, The Irish Football Association and The Scottish Football Association.  


The Laws of the Game for 2016/17 can be found by clicking here.


What are the different refereeing levels?


Level 1

National List (Premier League and Football League)

Level 2a

Panel Select (Conference Premier)

Level 2b

Panel (Conference North and South)

Level 3

Contributory (Contributory Leagues)

Level 4

Supply (Supply Leagues)

Level 5

Senior County (County Leagues)

Level 6

County (County leagues)

Level 7

Junior (Amateur leagues)

Level 8

Youth (Junior Referee below age of 16)

Level 9


How can I get a Three Lions badge?


Once you have qualified as a referee you will receive a Three Lions badge along with your certificate when you complete all aspects of The FA Referee Course.


If you wish to purchase additional badges, please send a cheque for £5 (per badge) made payable to ‘The Football Association’.


Please enclose a note with your FAN number, address and telephone number on and send it to:


Refereeing Department

The Football Association

Wembley Stadium

PO Box 1966