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Children’s Football Week Celebrates Game’s Simplicity

Mon 21st Jul 2014 | Football Industry Events

English football may be a billion pound industry but many children in its major cities who have been inspired by the recent World Cup still struggle to find somewhere to play.

The only grass pitch in the London borough of Islington is the Emirates Stadium, which has prompted the National Children’s Football Alliance (NCFA) to stage an event for 20 children from four north London estates during its National Children’s Football Week, which runs from July 19 to 27.

Hosted by Powerleague Wembley on Wednesday, July 23 at 2pm, the event, which is supported by Mitre, is one of many being held across the country in a bid to encourage youngsters to celebrate football in its simplest form. The week’s theme is Football & Peace, which marks the centenary of the most important football game ever played during the Christmas truce in 1914.

Paul Cooper, the NCFA’s national projects director, said: “We’re running several free football events and are asking everyone to join in with friends and family, even it is just a 2v3 World Cup in the garden.

“Sadly, many children in this country have been priced out of playing the game as joining a club can be expensive and even then there is no guarantee that they will even get to play for a team.

“With the rise in traffic and the fear of ‘stranger danger’, street football and even kickabouts in the park are becoming rare. The majority of football for children is now organised by adults and there is usually a cost involved. Many families have also been priced out of watching live football,” Mr Cooper added.

Other themed events being held this summer include a free community event at Cirencester Deer Park School on Friday, August 8 as part of the Summer Off the Streets Programme plus events in the Philippines, New Zealand and Uganda.

Mr Cooper said: “The nature of NCFW is that there will be many spontaneous games in school playgrounds, gardens and parks.”

Posted by: Aaron Gourley 

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