Football is the national sport for Britain. It is played at all levels from amateur to semi pro to professional. In the past it has been a mainly male dominated sport with very few women’s teams and less importance being put on female football in schools. Grassroots development There are many schemes run by the National Governing Body for football in Great Britain. 90 clubs in England were granted official FA Community Club awards, a certificate that will help English amateur football for years to come. These certificates of excellence show those nominated football clubs are run safely and well. The FA’s partners, McDonalds, are currently helping to recruit an extra 8,000 coaches to ensure that clubs across all of Great Britain are organised properly at all levels.
The County Youth Cup, originally known as the County Minor Championship, was launched in 1944-45 by FA to provide football for the best young players who have not signed up with professional clubs. Nowadays, any player under written contract, including Trainee/Scholarship players, or those registered at Academies or Centres of Excellence are not eligible to compete in the competition. Players under the age of 18, at school or playing in leagues affiliated to County Football Associations, are eligible.
There are also many local teams which have youth teams ranging form under 5’s to under 17’s and senior teams. Many local teams, such as Sutton United have many teams for each age group, with many different standards for each team. There are also many Little Leagues such as Morden Little League and Raynes Park. These play at the same place every week and allow young players who were not that gifted in football to still enjoy the game and not have to get through trials to play. There are also better standards of youth football. For example, West Surrey Football League contains many youth teams of semi pro teams. These contain some players who play at academy level for professional clubs.
Most secondary schools have a football team for each year, with the best players from each school playing for the district teams against other districts.These are mainly amateur or semi professional clubs that are governed by the Surrey FA. There are also clubs such as Crystal Palace and Fulham in this area who are professional and obviously play at a much higher level of football. Sponsorship Nationwide, the world’s largest building society and previous sponsor of the England football team, has renewed its sponsorship with The Football Association.
The multi-million pound deal is first ever specific sponsors of national women’s football in England. Although it can be seen that the FA and other elite teams such as Manchester United and Arsenal do not have any problem in finding big-money sponsors, smaller non-league teams like Sutton United struggle to find an appropriate sponsor. Schools can also not find appropriate sponsors and rely on local businesses to supply funds to successfully support teams. Some youth teams ask their players for money at the start of the season to pay for pitches, referees or even kits.
Governing Bodies FIFA is the governing body for the whole of world football and was founded on May 21st 1904. The aim of FIFA is to promote Football at all levels and to control every type of association football by taking steps as shall be deemed necessary or advisable. The FA is the governing body for British football and there are county bodies such as the Surrey FA. The English Schools FA , manages all of the national school competitions as well as the regional events such as county cups.
LFA, the London FA contols more than 80 leagues, 50,000 players and managers and 1,200 referees in Greater London. Competitions including the London Challenge, Senior, Intermediate, Junior, Ladies and Sunday Cup are controlled by the LFA.London Football Association is directed by the LFA Council, comprised of 5 Divisions of representatives from London’s 12 Professional Clubs. The RA, the referees association, oversees the refereeing of thousands of football matches, with thousands of members. Each national association has its own management team elected by the members, a Board in England and Councils in Wales and Northern Ireland that runs the day-to-day affairs representing the interests of its members. The Referees’ Association itself now becomes a purely commercial and administrational resource that is shared between and jointly owned by the three national associations. The PFA, the players’ football association, acts as a union for the players. This has power in the FA which can defend players in the event of any disputes, such as discipline.