If football is your passion, it can be hard figuring out how to turn a kick about with friends into the real possibility of playing professional football. Depending on where you live in the UK, there are ways in which you can make a start in fulfilling that dream.
There are several schemes in England that give youngsters the opportunity to get more involved in football. The ‘Get Into Football’ scheme, run by the Football Association, provides resources which allow young players to find local clubs to play for or even learn more about refereeing.
Training programmes are available through Charter Standard Schools and holiday courses may also be available in your area. It may sound like a lot of work to even begin to get into football, but once you remember that Jamie Vardy, one of the top footballers in the country, went through the same path of grassroots football it doesn’t seem as discouraging.
The SFA Community Scheme is one of several options to Scottish youngsters who are looking to learn more about football. McDonald’s also works in conjunction with the Scottish Football Association to generate more school football teams and to provide coaches to primary schools. There are also 5 and 7-a-side leagues for secondary school children who want to get involved in playing for a team.
The FAW Trust operates in Wales to provide more youth development for those of school age. Children within the UK are also encouraged to continue to play the game to help focus their interest and so watching soccer drill videos, like the ones found here https://www.sportplan.net/drills/Soccer/drills.jsp could help youngsters stay up to date with current tactics.
Northern Ireland also receives support from the McDonald’s Community Scheme and has not only seen the expertise of over 250 coaches provided to schools, it is also the location of an annual football festival.
There are also many grassroots schemes taking place across Northern Ireland which are set up by the Irish Football Association. One of the most popular schemes is the Flybe George Best Excellence Programme which consists of 25 boys from the under 12 to under 15 levels getting involved across six different centres.
By doing your research, you can find the right training programme or scheme to help you.