Just Thinking…Youth Football

Ive always been a footy fan, all my life, always will be for the rest of my life. In fact, some of my first few steps were trying to kick a football to my pap. Fordingbridge U16’s have been the focus of my sport for the past 6 years, the typical tactics run throughout each game. Tuck the ball to the lanky, big booted centre back and give the ball one great hoof down the pitch to the over paced twig of a striker to slot away ‘nicely’. Not exactly the most entertaining and ‘ticky-tacker’ style of football, but it worked for us.

The common misconception with modern football is that every team and every player should be one hundred percent passionate and serious about each game.Giving every single piece of enthusiasm and desperation to win the match. The meaning of enjoying the game has been lost in youth football, and i can’t put my finger on it as to why this happened.

For my team, we played the way we loved to play, whilst enjoying the true meaning behind our football experiences. The social, comical aspect for us was most important which is why I believe that is why we finished 1st in the league several years running. Sure, teams wanted to unforgettably want to ‘start’ on our players from anger of the fact that we were playing great football whilst joking about. But thats what the match is all about: the beer infused bellies of the local supporters blearing hilarious abuse to the opposite team, and the occasional conflict in game, but the ongoing respect for one another continues off the pitch.

But all I see in modern youth football is that the true nature of the game is lost. Comical comments from the crowd turn to racist abuse, and a common football mishap turns into a full blown fit between the two opposing teams. What is happening to the modern game? If you have the deeper reason for this, then please let me know, I’m lost.


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