A record feedback figure has been collated by The FA in the latest Grassroots Football Survey.
Now in its second year, the survey took in the views of over 30,000 people, including players, coaches, referees, staff and volunteers, topping the total of number of respondents from last year in the process.
And The FA’s director of participation and development, Kelly Simmons, has thanked those who took the time to provide invaluable feedback.
- Participants: 30,161
- 21% - Adult male players planning to increase their participation in grassroots football next year
- 27% - Coaches positive about the opportunities they have to progress
- 24% - Adult female players feel more supported by their County FA than their male counterparts, 14%
- 34% - Grassroots players aged 55+ currently play walking football
“We are very grateful to all the people who took time to complete the questionnaire,” said Simmons.
“It provides both The FA and CFAs with invaluable insight, helping shape and prioritise investment and services into the grassroots game.
“The FA invests £50m per annum into the grassroots game and the survey helps to shape FA priorities for all those with key roles in the grassroots game from coaches, referees, club and league officials and general volunteers who make football happen week in and week out.
“We can see how social media is playing its part in how people access and consume information about the game at this level, how people are utilising the smaller sided format rather than the traditional 11 v 11 game, and how people are incorporating other sports into their weekly football fix.”
The survey found that many in the grassroots community still aren’t fully utilising the services their County FA has to offer, with only half (49 per cent) aware that their County can offer advice and funding for facility development.
The availability of good quality Artificial Grass Pitches (AGP) is increasingly important to those in the grassroots game with 63 per cent of those involved in the grassroots game citing them as a priority, compared to 56 per cent last year; good news for those communities set to become the beneficiaries of Parklife schemes next year in Liverpool and west London respectively.
The increasing ascendance of the women’s game is reflected too. Adult female players feel better supported (24 per cent) than their male counterparts (14 per cent) and a greater proportion from the grassroots game would prefer to hear about both the men and women’s senior national teams combined (20 per cent) than just the men’s alone (12 per cent).
There is, however, still work to do in other areas of the diversity agenda; black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) participants are less likely to find their County either accessible (33 per cent) or inclusive than non-BAME participants (43 per cent). This is an area The FA is working hard to address.
“It is the responsibility of The FA both centrally and County FAs to ensure everyone, irrespective of race, gender, sexuality, faith and every other of the protected characteristics, has the same positive experience,” added Simmons.
“More than ever, we’re committed to the philosophy of For All and making sure everyone has the opportunity to be involved in the game at whatever level, and in whatever capacity, they wish to participate at.”