Irish Grassroots Football

SFAI have it all WRONG………’s time for change.

Over the last few weeks we have all witnessed some outrageous scores in the SFAI cup and you only have to go to there website and click on any of the ages group to see how teams have absolutely demolished their opponents.

Scores like 13-1, 10-1, 11-0, 12-0 our listed at u11s and the same for u12s and so on. The biggest score I saw was 16-0 and I only looked at 2 age groups.

Children Suffer

I just don’t see the point of cup football at such a young age, nobody likes to lose and certainly nobody goes out to lose, but to have to be endured a mauling by any team is both harmful and destructive for the promotion of the game. No child wants to lose never mind be beaten by over a dozen goals to Nil and this certainly won’t help the development of a player.

What does this say about the SFAI?

Well, it just shows how far removed they are from the game and from children of all ages. If they think that a child wants to be beaten in a cup game; a game where they stood no chance to compete in, even before the first whistle was blown, well, THINK AGAIN!!!

These MEN and TWO WOMEN (as listed on the SFAI website) continue to prove how little they know about the UNDERAGE game in this country. National cup football is not good for the development of a child in any country and by all accounts in Ireland; and particularly at such a young age. If you look to Europe national cup competition doesn’t start until u14s.

Going by some of the scores recorded this year it is both damaging to a player, a team and a club and I believe these types of scores have no place in kids football. Ok, freak scores can happen but we all know that a C or D team has little or no match for a Premier side.

Time for change

Something needs to be done and FAST, the age for National cup football should come in line with Holland, Germany and the rest of Europe. Once again we have proven that we have taken to doing things our own way and not even looking or accepting that in Europe they are doing it the right way. Kids come first, the focus is very much on the development of the player.

Michael O’Brien and his Council need to wake up and seriously consider these cup competitions for the younger age groups. Every year children fall out of love with the game and with scores like the ones on their site, you don’t need to wonder way.

Its getting embarrassing at this stage, C’mon it’s time to wake up and make the changes are kids game so desperately needs and national cup football at u12s is not the way. Wouldn’t these kids better off playing on smaller pitches with smaller numbers. Not adult size pitches with adult size goals. Never mind having to travel half the country to play an hour of football.


I always like to hear your opinions. Please comment below or email me If, you don’t have anything to add then please forward this on to a friend. Thanks for reading.

I’m also on twitter @Coachdiary

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