Sunday, October 05, 2008

No scores in the paper for youth football

There was plenty of publicity given recently to the English FA's decision to make football non-competitive for U9 teams. Part of this development was the order given that results for these age groups should no longer be published in newspapers.

This has been the case in Wales for some time. The English youth policy is famously backward , and Wales' progressive coaching system was rearded years ago with JIRA approval from UEFA.
Football here is non-competitive until the Under 12 age group. And so it should be.

You would think then, that the local FA's and leagues would all be behind this policy. Think again. Our local League in Caernarfon insists that we provide teamsheets and scores for precisely this purpose. And in Thursday's Caernarfon Herald , you could happily read that Felinheli Under 9's lost 7-0.

Sour grapes you might think. Not at all. We win sometimes too, and I would stll object strongly to publication. The point is that we believe in football for all as prescribed by the FAW, (and therefore the NWCFA and its Leagues).

The minute you start attaching any significance to match scores, you pressurise team managers to select teams according to ability. Some teams already do that I know, to the detriment of late developers who are put off football early on.

It isn't a level playing field. There are often large squads of players at these games, and we play a second game for those who didnt play in the first. We treat these games with equal importance.
Every game is a friendly.

But not according to the Gwyrfai Junior League who threaten to fine clubs opposed to this outdated nonsense. If football is officially uncompetitive then scores are irrelevent. To publish them becomes farcical and should be stopped.

No comments: