Get Involved in Grassroots Football In 2018

From a very early age my boy Joe has kicked a football. It was probably in his blood. As a family we are all a bit football mad, season ticket holders at West Bromwich Albion, with my brother playing to a semi professional level at Walsall FC until illness forced him to give up the sport he loves still. So Joe was probably primed to love football, both watching and playing, from an early age. I hear many negatives about grassroots football, but I wanted to share why I think being involved with a team can be a good thing, whether you are a boy or a girl, and whatever your age.

1. You get to travel

Sport really can broaden the horizons, even from an early age. Joe has already traveled to London to play at Arsenal as part of The Albion Foundation, and this year is hoping to take part in a tournament in Somerset. As he gets older, there may be opportunities further afield, my brother played in a tournament in Cyprus as a teenager, whilst companies like Absolute Sports Travel organise football tours that take in tournaments all over the world, allowing the opportunity to combine travel and football, with tournaments against teams from all around the world in places like Spain, Holland, Belgium and Italy.

Fitness Levels

As parents, we all worry that our children spend too much time stuck in front of a computer, tablet, Nintendo Switch, Play Station and numerous other online activities that see them become the modern equivalent of the couch potato. Joining a football team certainly stops this, as well as games Joe has training with his team twice a week, and this then encourages him to practice in his garden too, with new goals and a rebound net at the top of his Christmas list this year. This is fitness that is also great fun!

It’s a great family activity

Watching Joe play is something that we do as a family, it is a great bonding experience. Sometimes nan and grandad come along too, and Joe likes to watch his cousin Renee play – she is only four but already football mad and takes part in indoor coaching as part of the Future Baggies programme.

Joe helping Renee by going in goal

It’s a great way to make friends

Joe is an only child, and we live in a semi rural area some distance from school friends, so football is a great way to make new friends and to socialise with other children after school and at the weekend, Through football, there have been invites to parties, opportunities for ground tours and trips, and a whole host of friendships with children he would not have met otherwise.

Do you have any thoughts on Grassroots football? Is your child involved? Would love to hear your thoughts.

More Football Gift Ideas This Christmas

Following on from my last football gift post today I am bringing you some more gift ideas for those who think that football is the most important thing in the world. In this post I am concentrating on what to wear, and some of the important equipment that you need, whether you are planning to have a game in the garden, or maybe you’re training up your own little team of future sporting stars.

So, whether you have a budding Messi, a little miss Jodie Taylor, or even a Zinedine Zidance in your midst, these are some of the items that could lead to a very merry Christmas for one of the special people in your life.

Football Shirts

If your football fan supports a Premier League team, then there is every chance they already have the shirt. But there seems to be an unwritten rule that you can also wear shirts that belong to other teams as long as they are Continental teams, with Spanish and French sides being particular favourites. A good place to look for sports kits, tracksuits and training gear is excell sports. They have a wide range of tops from intercontinental teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid, Roma and Bayern Munich, as well as National sides like Belgium France, Portugal, and,yes, even England.

Nike Paris Saint-Germain Away Junior Short Sleeve Jersey 2017/2018
code: 44342 847408-720
Nike
From £44.95 Click to visit excell-sports

Nike England Home Mens Short Sleeve Jersey 2016/2017
£54.95 Now £38.46 Click to visit excell-sports

adidas Real Madrid Home Junior Short Sleeve Jersey 2017/2018
£42.95 Click to visit excell-sports

As well as a great range of kits (all the tops featured above also have matching shorts and socks that are also available on the site, you can view all football kits here.) , The site also has a good range of training gear, including the iconic CR 7 range from Cristiano Ronaldo.

Nike Boys’ Dry CR7 Squad Football Drill Top
£39.95 Click to visit excell-sports

Sporting Equipment from Networld

These days, even your average garden has a wide range of training equipment for your budding footballer. The days when a pop up goal was sufficient are long gone, and now sturdy robust goals able to withstand all weathers, football rebound nets which allow the player to hit the target even when they are playing alone, and mannequins which enable you to practice free kicks and set pieces are now available to buy whether you are using them to train a team or just to enjoy enhancing your skills at home.

Net World Sports are the number one supplier of sporting equipment for all sports, including cricket, golf and tennis. But it is football where it really excels, with a great range of football nets and goals and other equipment that can make training both fun and professional. Key pieces for Christmas 2017 include the Forza goals that range in size from mini target goals to full sized 16×7 nets. Forza nets are easy assembly and are built to last in strong UPVC, making the ideal Christmas present, even though this may mean assembling it on Christmas day!

8 x 4 FORZA Football Goal Post £46.99 Click to visit Net World Sports

As well as goals, a rebound net is a new favourite when it comes to Christmas gift ideas. Rebound nets are designed to improve heading, volleying and first touch, they have a simple foldaway design that makes them easy to use, and then transport to a field or put them away in a shed. You can get a single sided or two sided design.

RapidFire Football Rebound Net [Double Sided] £95 Click to visit Net World Sports

Freekick mannequins have long been used in the professional game, but you can now purchase these for use in your garden too. They come as individuals or in packs of three, and also in different sizes to suit junior or senior players.

FORZA ASTRO Football Mannequins [Includes Bases] £57.99 Click to visit Net World Sports

Do you have any sports equipment on your Christmas list this year?

 

Christmas Gift Guide for Sports Lovers

We are now firmly entrenched in November. Halloween has gone, Bonfire Night is now a distant memory, so we can now firmly turn our thoughts to the most wonderful time of the year, at least in my eyes. Yes, Christmas is now just over a month away, and for some, this might mean that the panic is starting to set in. Because, although some people are very easy to buy a gift for, others can lead to many sleepless nights.

I have been writing a series of posts giving pointers to gift ideas that may be a little different from the norm. This post is some ideas for gifts for sports lovers. This can be an idea for something for those who partake in sports, or those who just enjoy it from the comfort of the stands, or even just get a thrill from watching it on their TV. There is just a football in this post – look out for a full football gift guide coming very soon, but there are other ideas that may just tick the box this Christmas.

A gift for a golf lover

Golf is one of the most popular sports and there are a range of gifts for the golf lover. A really popular and practical choice is a golf sweater. These come in a range of designs, from thin knits using Merino wool, to thicker, more winter friendly designs of lambswool. There are a range of patterns to suit all tastes, or you can opt for a plain version. If you know someone who truly loves their golf, this could be the perfect gift idea.

 

A Gift For a Darts Fan

Now, this could be something obvious, like a dartboard, or a set of personalised darts. But Christmas is the time of major darts tournament, with both the PDC and BDO hosting huge tournaments at the Ally Pally (Alexander Palace) and the Lakeside respectively. Tickets to watch these events could be a much appreciated gift  that is welcomed far more than chocolates or aftershave yet again.

Football…

Season tickets for your favourite teams can be very expensive, but many teams will sell a half season ticket as a Christmas gift idea, obviously this is much more affordable and you still get to see the rest of the season. This might be a good idea for someone who has only ju

st got into football and so may not have thought of getting a season ticket before.

 

If you are interested in woman’s football, the team is currently playing a series of qualifiers for the World Cup. Tickets are so much cheaper than for the National Men’s game, and in every likelihood the game will be better and more exciting. A family ticket could be a great idea for a Christmas gift to a sports loving family.

There are many more Christmas gift ideas that have a sporting theme. These range from novelty socks and slippers, rugby ball shaped washbags, replica retro football shirts and even aftershave that gives you the chance to smell like Beckham and Ronaldo. Whatever you give, the chances are that you will put a smile on someone’s face this December 25th.