Showing the importance of grassroots football

The fourth UEFA Grassroots day and football festival, held at Station Park this year, was a great success for all the youngsters who attended.

Pupils from P3 and P4 represented their schools in a fun-filled celebration of football in the week running up to Saturday’s Champions League final between Borussia Dortmund and Bayern Munich.

At the festival all the youngsters took part in 4-a-side games in line with the Scottish FA National Player Pathway with most schools sending along more than one team to take part.

The football festivals were held all across Europe with Wednesday being the official UEFA Grassroots Day.

An annual undertaking, UEFA Grassroots Day was created by European football’s governing body to emphasise its commitment to the sport’s foundations.

A regular fixture on the Wednesday before the UEFA Champions League final, it relays the important message that elite football cannot flourish without healthy grassroots – and that all of today’s superstars began playing at grassroots level.

It also underlines the unstinting efforts and essential contribution of thousands of volunteers. This work was recognised at the UEFA Grassroots Workshop in Oslo, Norway, last month, where a group of deserving people were honoured with this season’s UEFA Grassroots Day Awards

Ioan Lupescu, UEFA chief technical officer, said: “The outstanding success of UEFA’s decision to peg a Grassroots Day and a Champions Festival to the UEFA Champions League final has highlighted the value of the big events in the footballing calendar in terms of promoting grassroots activities.”