Exceptional acts of sportsmanship witnessed during December will be rewarded as we invite nominations for the latest monthly Fair Play Awards on Facebook, with a deadline of Monday 14th January for submissions.
Individuals and clubs in local grassroots football who went that extra mile in the name of admirable conduct could win a special prize through the new Facebook voting format. A winner is being selected for every calendar month and anyone can be nominated for the competition, which will ultimately culminate in an open vote between two final nominees.
The goal of the awards is to promote the best elements of the game and encourage them in all formats of youth and adult football. November’s winners were Hullbridge Sports Under 16s, as nominated by Simon Silva-Peake, who reported: “My son’s team were losing 1-0 with eight minutes to play and scored twice to get a deserved win.”
“What really impressed me was the sportsmanship from the coaches, players and parents of Hullbridge. My son plays in goal and he played amazingly, making a dozen or so really good saves. Each time he did, the parents applauded him and, with one save, a player from Hullbridge went over to him after the shot and shook his hand.”
“At full time, despite losing, every player went and congratulated him. Then the two coaches from Hullbridge made a point of telling him how good he was and then the parents all shook his hand as well. Things like this don’t happen enough and, at Under 16s level, full of teenage attitude, this was amazing to see, especially as they had lost.”
Helen Hever, Essex County FA Designated Safeguarding Officer, said: “The game can't exist without respect between players, coaches, referees, fans, leagues and everybody in football. Everyone loves football because of the passion and the competitive edge, but it’s important that we’re able to play the game in the right way. The spirit of fair play is crucial to that.”
“We’re looking to celebrate any display of sportsmanship across all the formats of the game. Fair play exists all over grassroots, like shaking hands or three cheers at the end of a match, but we’re seeking nominations that go that bit further. We’re looking for elements like team spirit - both in the team you play for and the opposition - respect, friendship and excellence.”
Nominations are open until Monday 14th January to recognise fair play which took place in December. To put someone forward, comment on this Facebook post with these details: yours and the nominee’s name, club/team (and age group where applicable), a description of why your nominee should win. Good luck!