Great strides have been made by The FA in growing the awareness and understanding of Futsal across England since 2003. A particularly important and successful area that The FA has focused upon is developing the game within schools and young people. Subsequently, The FA National Youth Futsal Festival supported by the English Schools Football Association (ESFA) and Umbro was established to provide a national showcase event that could inspire young people to take-up and play Futsal on a regular-basis.
The aims and intention of the Festival is to not just provide a one-off Futsal event that young people enjoy and then forget, but to provide a goal to encourage schools, clubs and young people to play Futsal throughout the year with the climax being the opportunity to attend the National Futsal Festival.
A more structured qualifying approach has been adopted in recent years to award teams places at the National Festival. The FA organise a series of Regional Festivals around the country, with most teams entering the regional stages after qualifying through local county competitions and festivals. Those teams that win the Regional Festivals are awarded a place at the National Youth Futsal Festival and have an opportunity to experience an extremely fun and enjoyable showcase of youth Futsal.
The underlying aim of The FA National Youth Futsal Festival is not necessarily to be elitist and to identify the very best youth Futsal clubs; more importantly the Festival’s primary role is to act as a catalyst to stimulate and support the ongoing youth development of Futsal across the country.
Every year the Festival itself plays a pivotal role in encouraging schools, County FAs and other partners to establish sustainable Futsal development programmes that ensure Futsal is played by young people throughout the rest of the year.
The FA National Youth Festival 2012 will be staged again at the fantastic @Futsal Birmingham International Arena between the 30 June to 1 July. This year up to 80 boys and girls teams from schools and clubs across U10, U12, U14 and U16 age groups will take part it what will undoubtedly be a spectacular event for everybody involved.
To find out more about how you can enter and be involved in The FA National Youth Futsal Festival please contact your local County FA.
England's largest youth Futsal competition returns for 2012.