Suppporters Direct response to FA Commission proposal

9th May, 2014

Supporters Direct today issued their response to the Chairman’s FA Commission into the future of the England team, and specifically the proposals for Feeder Clubs or B-Teams.

In our evidence to the Commission, we said the following on ‘B-teams’ or Feeder Clubs:

• The introduction of Feeder Clubs or B-teams will serve to reinforce the system of player development that currently results in the stockpiling of talent. • In line with the Culture Media and Sport Select Committee review reporting in 2011 & in 2013 (and which remains largely undelivered, despite the threat of government intervention if the recommendations were not acted upon within a year of the 2013 report), we believe that The FA needs to take the lead on this issue as it is a whole-game concern. Player development is central to the success of the English game in the same way as the regulation of football clubs in the financial, governance and ownership sense. • We have a depth in our professional football system that should mean we have the deepest talent pool coming through but it isn’t happening. That is not because we don’t have feeder clubs for the top clubs, it’s because the coaching and infrastructure is not right. This can only be changed with a strategic game-wide approach, overseen by the game’s governing body. • Distribution of talent generally follows the distribution of money. In the English game, the vast majority of the game’s financial resources are vested in a small group of elite clubs who can afford to develop their talent. The game should be looking at ways to redistribute those monies more equitably so that there is the broadest possible base to access and nurture talent for the England teams.

We were surprised that:

1. We submitted our evidence to the Commission’s Administrator on the 23rd December and again on the 7th January, yet received no acknowledgement of receipt, or of its content. 2. We have never been asked to speak with the Commission about the content of our submission, yet some 300 ‘stakeholders’ of English football were ‘consulted’.

The desire for change amongst supporters is clear, and this issue is serving as a focal point for the anger and discontent felt towards all those who run our national game.

Along with our colleagues at The FSF, we will be hosting our Supporters Summit on the 26th July at Wembley Stadium, and it will be focused on the campaign to Change Football for good.

You can read our full response via SD FA Chairmans Commission Submission Dec 13

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