CEO Blog

CEO Blog 16-17

Issue 19

This week features FIFA's sin bin idea, Watford's values and Grow the Game funding.

Screenshot of BBC sport article on sin bins

It’s a sin (bin)

Gianni Infantino, the President of FIFA, said when he was elected that he would be looking to be innovative. The story this week that FIFA is considering using a sin bin for yellow card offences was big news for the game.

The concept works well in Rugby Union, and a variation has also been used in 5 a side football. On paper there are many benefits, notably being simpler to manage for referees, reducing administration for officials across the game and also reducing money collected in fines.

The key will be establishing consistency in the way it is implemented, and also ensuring that sanctions for on field ill-discipline are dealt with robustly to try to improve behavior and reduce the level of offending.

It will need thinking through, but the principle looks good for the grassroots game.

Twitter screenshot

Watford’s values a credit to the game, and to Graham Taylor

I was struck by 3 pieces of news involving Watford this week. The club’s impressive win at The Emirates was the first noteworthy event, but this was pushed into perspective by the funeral of Graham Taylor.

Such was the stature of the man, and the huge impact on the football club and the local community, that Graham’s funeral was covered by a live feed on the BBC’s website. The people of Watford came out in theirs 1000’s to pay tribute, and to say a fond farewell to a man who had re-written the club’s history.

Graham’s footballing achievements have been well documented, but what strikes me as he leaves us is that inherently he was an incredibly decent, hard-working and caring man who saw himself as a servant of the game. There aren’t many around who extol these virtues in the era of mega money, huge TV deals and player power.

Maybe there are more examples of decent values than we think. Adlene Guedioura left Watford on transfer window day to move to Boro’, and he paid tribute to Watford and the fans he is leaving on Twitter.

His Tweet was brilliant, and shows that some players do build genuine and lasting bonds with their clubs and supporters, and moving on really means something to them.

This might well say something about the values Graham Taylor instilled at Watford, and that his legacy lives on through these values.

Grow the Game

Grow the Game

Cambridgeshire FA and the other 49 counties launched the Football Foundation’s Grow the Game funding opportunity this week.

It’s a great scheme, with grants of £1500 available to establish new teams to help us increase participation. The deadline for applications is the 29th March.

It was clear that club football is alive and well in Ely this week. Although Ely City’s progress in the FA Vase came to an end, the record crowd of 646 showed that there is great enthusiasm within local communities for the local football club. It was great to see.

Until next week.