FANS HAVE BEEN welcoming Labour’s plans to boost the grassroots game and encourage the next generation of players and coaches. The offer was announced by Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn as he joined youngsters training at Hackney Marshes on Cup Final Day.
The Labour Party will be taking steps to ensure that 5% of the proceeds from TV sales go to grassroots football. The four main football pledges in Labour’s manifesto are:
•Put fans at the heart of their clubs – by legislating for accredited supporters trusts to be able to appoint and remove at least two club directors and to purchase shares when clubs change hands. Labour will also review fan participation in sports governance more widely.
•Fix the broken ticketing market – by enforcing anti-bot legislation and implementing the recommendations of the Waterson review to ensure fair opportunities for fans to buy tickets.
•Improve access provision for disabled sports fans – by ensuring that rapid improvements are made and by prioritising action to make clubs comply with obligations under the 2010 Equality Act.
•Ensure that investment and support is given to grassroots women’s football so as many women and girls as possible can benefit from participating in football
The detail of the policy shows that it has been put together by Labour-supporting ordinary fans. The Party has recognised that when games are moved at short notice, fans are often left having bought train tickets they can no longer use – and they then they have to fork out a second time for new tickets. Labour wants to work with Train Operating Companies to develop a new flexible ticket which fans can use to travel on the original date or a later date if the game is used.
Jeremy Corbyn started the day in goal – where he confidently kicked away the first shot at goal. However, a second youngster placed a confident shot in the top corner of the goal, beating the Labour Leader. The goal scorer’s face was a picture as he turned away, realising he may have scored a goal against the next Prime Minister!
Turning back to the job in hand, Jeremy Corbyn said: “Too often, youth football teams cannot find pitches to play on and when they do they are expensive and the facilities are not fit for purpose. All-weather pitches are like gold-dust and coaching badges can cost unaffordable amounts. Under these circumstances, it is no surprise we are not nurturing the talent that we all know exists within the beautiful game.
“To address this lack of funding and lack of facilities, Labour in government will ensure that 5% of domestic and international TV rights money is diverted to the grassroots game. This will ensure the footballing talent of young girls and boys is harnessed, and football is a game for the many, not the few.”
•Later in the day, long term Arsenal supporter Jeremy Corbyn saw his team lift the FA Cup. As Jeremy tweeted, the victory was “against the odds” – is this an omen?
•Read more about it:
Jeremy Corbyn: no one and no community left behind
Jeremy Corbyn at North London BAME rally
•See Jeremy Corbyn at Hackney Marshes: