PREMIER FOOTBALL HAS

ARRIVED

PREMIER CLUB CUP TO DRAW OUT THE PRIDE

The game sees another huge step in development with a competition in the same vein as the successful EFL Trophy.

Four regions will host current premier league club round robin fixtures on just the one day, with the winners (top two of London and the North, one from Midlands, one from South) convene for the grand final.

The event is open to 50+, 60+ mixed, & 40+ women's categories to teams currently donning club colours and kicks off in the New Year. Entry is now open -

£30 per team.

THE PENALTY SHOULD BE FREEDOM

With over two thirds of one-step penalties infringed – and that figure may even be higher if referees were more readily able to identify infringements – the whole issue needs serious looking into. Incorrect weight distribution at address, nerves, fidgety disposition, adrenalin, lack of conscious or sub-conscious motor coordination, all affect performance and poor practise effects results. Clear two steps, half steps and micro steps are the norm in what should cognitively be an ordinarily simple sequence. It is abundantly clear that this is not the case. Referees are also remiss in accurately observing small indiscretions with regard to the spot kicker’s physical movement, which leads to inconsistency and further compounds the fact that the specific requirement is unworkable – of which even practise will not wholly eliminate, or even in itself, does not recreate match game tension or importance.

As an experienced referee of penalty kicks and shootouts, with an acute clinical eye for all of the relative infringement aspects, with an unswaying regard for pure one-step protocol, I have upset many a spot kicker, ruined some days for entire teams, brought onlookers to clearly doubt what I had seen in their observing absence – all done to the letter of the law.     

Recently I refereed overseas with the competition format dictating a no-step penalty kick. Kickers were to place a foot near or beside the ball and just swing the kicking foot at the ball. In my opinion the concept would seem rather more simplistic, but in truth, the same issues were just as relevant and foreboding, leaving me to remain adamant that this process is just as flawed as the one-step kick. If something is relatively difficult for most people to undertake then surely that process needs addressing and not sweeping under the 3G with crumbs of indifference, denial or a laissez-faire keep calm and carry on attitude. The thing needs reform – and quickly.

For me to ask a spot kicker to re-take a fifth penalty was a step too much. It was cruel. What were his crimes? Micro steps, slight foot moves to transfer weight. Twitchy feet. A hundred spectators incredulous because they were positioned the other side of the ball and the unseen standing foot infringements. What bearing did these petty infringements have on the strike? Hardly observable to the onlooker. Dismay to team-mates. Asked to repeat the misery, many re-takes are saved or missed, as the cognitive issue is not on the target but on the physical mechanics in order to move the ball to the target.

The need to reduce velocity into the spot kick should not be the issue. Keepers face harder shots from almost equal distances in open play. If the required mechanics cannot be met by the greater majority, then the rule surrounding the one-step kick needs amending. It is unjust, unfair, unworkable, and in some cases unnecessarily cruel. It is a poor way to end events and should be scrapped in favour of freedom to walk to the ball. The only issue for player, referee and observer is as to whether or not the player has ‘not walked’ to the ball – a jog or run. This is clear, fair and workable. Easy for all to discern over. Should the kicker not walk to the ball and score, the goal is denied and there is no re-take – another correct amendment to any infringed spot kick. If it’s messed it up, so be it. No second chance.

WFU wholly support the FA Laws Of The Game in full, but this one single issue has been amended for the National Tournament finals this year. It appears that there is also a smattering of support for this reform, and several other major competitions are moving into either freedom of walk for penalties, or the same within a two-metre radius. The game shouldn’t be hampered by something that by and large is simply not attainable by the majority of players. To continue such is simply not right.

WFU National 60+ Finals Dates

Bexley v Cirencester Town v Norwich Socca Seniors v
Redcar Strollers -  January 2020

Hall Of Famers

Vic Vaines, Chris Humphries

ADDITION TO HALL OF FAME

Eddie Gibson is the latest inductee into the Hall Of Fame. His deserved inclusion is for his passion, commitment and longevity towards Leeds Titans WFC, his enthusiastic and dedicated work with his Farrah Rose tournament and his organisational expertise with the Northern Premier League. Eddie also co-ordinates the hugely successful Inter-League tournament featuring the top four sides in north, south and Welsh regional leagues. 

Love walking football but still got more to offer?

Young vets still bossing it?

SuperVets may be the answer

For those finding walking football a little restrictive, and in an arena where an inability to showcase talent, fitness and pace hinders individuality and team momentum, a 50+ and 60+ SuperVets tournament invites teams to participate in a first national competition of its kind this year. Not aimed specifically at the elite fitness participants, this platform allows players an opportunity to move freely around the game at a pace that suits; expressing creativity, freedom and flair.
Sign up on 'CONTACT' and get you game moving.
It must be stressed that particular attention must be acknowledged and applied to player health and safety in this new initiative; therefore all participant teams and players must ingrain this ethos as a way of playing the game in order to safeguard its future.

Two legends of the games and a

large lump of silver

Proud supporter of