Football - back to its roots

Member Article

FA cash helping Liverpool grow grass-roots football

Liverpool has been chosen as one of three cities to pilot a new Football Association scheme to develop the game at grassroots level.

While world media attention is drawn to the elite professional game at its highest level – the Champions League, the Premier League and the regular international tournaments – the future of the sport depends on participation.

The FA has announced a record £260million investment into grassroots football across the country. The new investment will be spread over four years as part of the FA’s National Game Strategy for Participation and Development. Alongside the £260million announced, an additional multi-million pound investment, supported by the government, will be utilised to establish 30 new city hubs across England. Liverpool will be one of the pilot hubs.

Welcoming the funding boost, the Liverpool County Football Association will work towards four goals - Participation, Development, Facilities and Volunteers - all targeted in a local development strategy. Working alongside the Football Foundation, the Liverpool County FA will also be looking to deliver capital investment to improve facilities.

These improvements would include new full-size 3G pitches for training and grassroots developments, with ten new pitches targeted for completion within the next four years.

The County FA is also to work with Merseyside clubs as part of the Pitch Improvement Programme, which provides expertise and machinery to grassroots clubs.

Finally, working with clubs and leagues, the Liverpool County FA will be aiming to recruit and develop a workforce of volunteers to work across all areas of grassroots football.

David Pugh, Chief Executive Officer of the Liverpool County FA, said: “The Liverpool County FA has a duty to protect and serve our existing players whilst working to grow the game, and the funding that has been made available through the National Game Strategy for Participation and Development provides us will valuable funds to do this.

“In many areas, the quality of grassroots football on Merseyside is good. 80% of our grassroots clubs have Charter Standard status, with the same figure of clubs possessing a qualified coach. In addition, 71% of our teams play in Charter Standard leagues. However, there are areas of grassroots football that we’re keen to improve. We’re working with a number of parties to build, protect and enhance football facilities in the area, which will in turn provide a better setting and improve the quality of provision on offer to players across the board. “In our latest Perception Survey, which provides us with valuable feedback from people involved in grassroots football, 72% of our customers that took part stated that they thought we are doing a good job.

We’re dedicated to improving on that figure and creating a close relationship with all involved in the game, enhancing the service we’re providing to customers. Our work in line with the National Game Strategy will hopefully achieve this.“

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Simon Malia .

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