Free Match Play!
Wed 29 April 2015
It is a huge problem in the UK. Children aren’t playing enough on their own. Due to more cars on the roads, more crime and a rise in the computer game culture - less children are playing together away from adult supervised environments. They aren’t getting the time to just be kids and play.
The majority of time children play sport is now with adults, which in 2015 is understandable for safety reasons, however only playing adult supervised sport can be stifling for our players. (Assuming you are over 25 reading this) If you think back to when you were a child, I’m sure you can remember what it was like playing with friends for hours without any adults around telling you what to do! You would play until it got dark and made your way home.
I’m sure you saw squabbles, fouls and arguments. You probably laughed a lot and your imagination and creativity was allowed to flourish. It is now 2015 and we are starting to develop children who feel they can’t play any unorganized sport. It’s getting rare to see children throw down a couple of jumpers for goalposts and just start playing. Playing street and park football involves older players playing with younger players. There are ball hoggers, sometimes one team has more players than the other; but this is for kids to work out for themselves and it’s all good learning for them.
We are constantly looking at the problems we face in football in the UK and thinking how we can be part of the change we want to see.
Therefore we would like to experiment with an idea. We will leave spaces available for free match play to take place at certain academies on certain days.
Saturday Training at Isleworth, Chiswick and Hounslow:
9-12 year olds can play free matches: 10.30am-11.00am
7-8 year olds can play free matches: 11.00am-11.30am
Saturday Training at St.Marys Twickenham:
8-12 year olds can play free matches: 10.00am-10.30am
Saturday Training at Orleans Richmond:
8-12 year olds can play free matches: 10.30-11.00am
Monday Training at Chiswick and Wednesday Training at Green School Isleworth:
8-12 year olds can play free matches: 5.30pm - 6.00pm
Monday Training at St.Marys University
8-12 year olds can play free matches: 5.00pm-5.30pm
Rules to the free match play:
It is optional, if you can’t get your child there for that time it’s no problem you can just attend the session as per normal.
We are providing the space and the area for the children to play, as well as a few footballs, but the children need to organise the games amongst themselves. Initially we will not provide any goals for the children. They will need to use cones for the goals.
Parents cannot interfere and coach - adults should keep their distance.
We can only do this for the 8 year olds and above to start with while the idea establishes itself.
Children must be signed up to the WMF class they are attending afterwards or beforehand. They must also sign their name in before going to play in the free play game and hold an up to date online subscription.
We can offer this service if we are outdoors, when we are back indoors we will not have enough space for this.
We are trusting players to play with respect. There will be occasions where our players will accidentally foul and some children may get hurt. The same way children would play together in the park we have to trust that there will not be any serious injuries. You can read our Ts and Cs on this here for further information.
Ultimately this is an experiment that we really hope will work and offer more value to our players. We hope to further develop the community of footballers that we are developing and we really believe the children will enjoy the extra unsupervised 30 minutes of football. We welcome your feedback on this idea to further improve the concept.
We would by no means advocate to only play free play as we would like to think your children have been developing with our supervised technical training, but we hope this combination of free play and coached play will further enhance our players.