A coach interacts with players

U18s football: maximising enjoyment and minimising risk

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Coaching children is one of the most rewarding things you can choose to do.

It offers the chance to make a real impact and to see the players you work with develop week by week. That’s a powerful role to have.
Your behaviour on the pitch, at the training ground and online, all play a part in shaping your coaching reputation – and your influence on young people.

It’s therefore important that, both off and online, you manage appropriate boundaries and respectful relationships that are supportive, positive and aim to help your players improve.

If you work in youth football, remember that:

  • the law defines a child as being under 18 years of age
  • you must have an in-date and FA-accepted criminal records check (CRC)
  • maintaining up-to-date safeguarding training with help to keep your practice relevant – and safe.

How to stay up to date

  • Complete your FA safeguarding workshop – or recertify now
    Designed for everyone who works with young people, this training focuses on making football safe and needs to be completed every three years. If you're a committee member, we've also produced a digital module that's tailored to your needs. To find out more about all FA safeguarding courses, click here.
  • Access our free safeguarding downloads
    Created to assist your club in building and maintaining a supportive, safe and fun environment, these free downloads cover a wide range of information.
  • Explore the Boot Room
    This safeguarding playlist covers basic information, with a focus on staying safe online.


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