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FA's Kelly Simmons speaks out at Soccerex about Grassroot Football and increasing Womens participation in the national game


 Football News 24/

Kelly Simmons spoke out about Grassroot Football and increasing women's participation in the national game at Soccerex on Tuesday (Sept 27th)

Simmons, FA Participation and Development Manager, oversees the national game including children’s grassroots football and is leading the FA 'National Game Strategy' in investing over £260,000,000 into grassroot football over the next 4 years.
Simmons is a highly respected member of the UEFA Grassroots panel alongside the FIFA women's committee. She has also received an MBE in the year of 2002 for her services towards football.
Asked why is it important for the FA to spend such a large amount of money on grassroots football Simmons said; “football is the national game in this country and very much the global game. We want all of our big commitments in the FA’s corporate plan to give everybody the chance to play football who wants to play it and for that to be in a great environment so they can develop to be the best that they can be”.

“The role of the governing body is from top to bottom of the game so it’s about getting people into the sport as well as supporting the elite and your national squad”.

Simmons went on to discuss the financial cost surrounding grassroots football.

“It is a lot of money but it’s an expensive business, you need footballing schools, you need good exit roots in to clubs, you need volunteers and referees, coaching and facilities. It starts to become a complex jigsaw that needs investment in all aspects for it to work”.

Simmons then discussed the FA’s 2020 challenge surrounding women and girl’s participation.  

Women's football challenge 2020 involves the aim to double the amount of both women and girl’s participation in football, the equivalent of putting 7000 teams in local communities to make sure every girl has got a local community to play in. With the Lionesses coming third in the world cup and being ranked fifth in the world, the ever-growing success of the squad highlights the importance to widen the female playing base to give England managers of the future the biggest pool of players to pick from in order for the success to continue.


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