The Board met on Wednesday 9 September and set out below are the main points discussed at the meeting.
One of the FA’s strategic priorities for the 2020-2024 period is for our senior teams to win a major tournament by 2024.
Les Reed (Technical Director) presented to the Board on his review of the Technical Directorate and the measures being put in place to give England men’s senior team the best opportunity for future tournament success.
There are a number of components to this, including talent identification, facilities, player development, coaching and performance support and the Board noted the changes that will be made, particularly in respect of the bespoke support to be offered to the different age group squads. Sue Campbell (Director, Women’s Football) will present to us on the plans for the women’s senior team at a future meeting.
Spearheaded by the Duke of Cambridge, the Heads Up campaign was a season-long partnership that harnessed the power of football to change the conversation around mental health. As the campaign comes to its natural conclusion, the Board received a report on the various activities undertaken, culminating in the Heads Up FA Cup Final, and the positive outcomes it has achieved.
Good progress has been made by the FA in improving the diversity of our Board, Council and Executive. However, as England’s leading sport, we need to be representative of those who play, referee, coach, support and administer the game and ensure that our governance reflects appropriate levels of diversity and inclusion.
To this end, the Board agreed terms of reference for a diversity review, which will encompass the FA’s Board, Council and Executive. A steering group comprising Greg Clarke (Chairman), Peter McCormick (Vice-Chair, Professional Game), Jack Pearce (Vice-Chair, National Game) and Stacey Cartwright (Senior Independent Director) will oversee the work, supported by Rachel Brace (HR Director) and Edleen John (International Corporate Affairs and Co-Partner for Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Director) from the Executive. Our aim is to present findings and recommendations to the July 2021 Council meeting following extensive consultation.
The Board discussed the particular challenges clubs are currently experiencing with player registration through the Whole Game System. This is the last window in which registrations will be through this old technology as we will then be moving to the new Platform for Football. COVID-19 has condensed the registration period which has exacerbated the problem, but we recognise the frustrations of those seeking to register their players.
In line with good corporate governance practice, we reviewed the terms of reference and membership of each of the Board’s committees and also the Board’s schedule of reserved matters and financial authority levels.