"Beauty comes first. Victory is secondary. What matters is joy." Socrates (Brazil)
Our philosophy is clear.
Youth football is a KIDS' game. It belongs to kids not to adults.
Kids do not (and should not) play for adult entertainment. They should play for themselves. They should play because they love football. This love of the game drives development. You can see it every time a truly great player plays. Our job is to cherish that love and provide a safe space for kids to play, have fun and improve their game.
So we have some very clear rules (based on the Manchester Respect League's Six Principles) to help us return the game to the kids.
1. We play to learn, not just to win. Kids compete, we want them to compete, but adults need to get out of their way!
2. We don't have 'A' teams or hold trials. We believe this has no place in grassroots football. The 'best player' at 8 might be different to the 'best player' at 12. We don't put a ceiling on our expectations of any child. We have no right to do that. Let's keep all kids in the game.
3. We organise equal pitch time for every child who regularly attends club sessions. No one learns by sitting on the sidelines. Our job is to keep all kids involved.
4. Every child will get experience in all positions on the pitch. Evidence shows this is best for player development.
5. We will never direct play or shout instructions in matches. Kids learn by making their own decisions. Encouragement and questions are welcome. Let's develop confident, thinking footballers.
6. Kids' voices will always be louder than the adults. It's their game, let them play!
Football is also about values and about community. We are committed to making football affordable for all kids. No one should ever feel "priced out" of our national game.