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Thursday 1 March 2012


The FA and Vauxhall - The Grass Roots Football Show

The FA and Vauxhall Motors are today announcing a new initiative aimed at tackling the football drop out of teenagers in the 14-17 age group.

The initiative follows an extensive study by HPI, commissioned by The FA and England Team Sponsor and FA Youth Partner Vauxhall Motors, to determine the factors affecting drop out within this age group and forms part of The FA Vauxhall Youth Programme.

According to HPI Research, the main reasons for the decline in participation in the 14-17 age group is due to a realisation that they are not going to play professional football, club football becoming more competitive, the lure of other pursuits and external pressures including school work, travel arrangements and part-time jobs.

The FA and Vauxhall aim to tackle these issues head on by offering a recreational form of football in after-school clubs, played in quality small-sided facilities and run by specialist FA Coaches. 14-17 year-olds will be able to sign up for a 10-week block of sessions, which will cater for every ability and fitness level. It is hoped that these sessions will inspire teenagers to get back into affiliated football in either small-sided or 11 v 11 formats.

Vauxhall Managing Director, Duncan Aldred, said: “We are very excited to talk about our plans for youth football moving forwards and tackling the issues we are currently facing with youth participation.

“From the beginning of our sponsorship, we have been committed to supporting football from the grassroots game all the way through to the national senior teams, and it is vitally important for the future of the game in England that we address the significant drop out rates in this age group.”

As part of their focus on the 14-25 age group and drive to address participation rates, Sport England has committed to match-fund £100,000 of Vauxhall’s investment through its SportsMatch scheme to launch the programme.

Sport England Chief Executive Jennie Price added; “Football plays an incredibly important role in grassroots sport, with more than 2.1 million people playing the game once a week. We’re delighted that Vauxhall is working with The FA and Sport England to keep more youngsters involved in our national game by creating new recreational opportunities for young people to take part.”

The FA and Vauxhall will appoint eight full-time specialist coaches to run up to 40 sessions per week across England for both boys and girls. The coaches will also help support teenage football in schools and clubs, helping to re-instil young people’s affection for playing the game and deliver high quality training.

The FA Senior National Game Development Manager, Peter Ackerley also commented on the initiative: “The FA is working closely with its Youth Partner Vauxhall alongside Sport England to understand the issues around the significant drop off in football at this age and ensure that we address this with the appropriate football offering tailored to engage the youth audience.

“This is about looking at what our young players are telling us and providing them with options to overcome the highlighted barriers, helping transition them into creating a football habit for life.”



For more information, please contact Johann Alexander, The FA’s PR Manager at: or on 07508 041 918.

Vauxhall Football Media Centre

Ben Thompson - Macesport
Mobile: 07932005305 / Email:

About The FA:

The Football Association (FA) is the governing body of football in England and is responsible for developing the game at all levels, from grassroots to the international teams. As a not-for-profit organisation, The FA is committed to making football a positive and inclusive experience for everyone involved, from players and coaches to match officials and spectators. The FA runs 24 England teams, including youth and disability sides to the men’s and women’s seniors, as well as eleven competitions such as the world-famous FA Cup. As English football’s governing body, The FA is also responsible for the regulatory aspects of the game, including disciplinary procedures and doping control.


Vauxhall Motors has been manufacturing motor vehicles in the UK continuously since 1903. Vauxhall’s range spans all mainstream sectors of the vehicle market with best-selling model names such as Corsa, Astra, Meriva, Zafira and Insignia regularly topping the sales charts. Vauxhall is also the largest manufacturer of commercial vehicles in the UK and its parent company General Motors’ 4th largest global market.

The company employs c5000 people in the UK and exports three quarters of its production. It is headquartered in Luton, Bedfordshire where it also manufactures the Vivaro light commercial vehicle. A second plant at Ellesmere Port in Cheshire produces the Astra.

Company Facts

  • Vauxhall manufactures over 200,000 vehicles year in the UK
  • Vauxhall has been manufacturing motor vehicles in the UK continuously since 1903
  • Vauxhall employs c5000 people across its UK operations
  • The company has two manufacturing plants in the UK – the Luton van plant manufacturing the Vauxhall and Opel Vivaro, the Renault Trafic and Nissan Primastar in a joint venture; Ellesmere Port in Cheshire produces the Astra 5-door, Astra Sports Tourer and the Astravan
  • Vauxhall is a significant exporter of over 75% of its production bound for mainland Europe and beyond
  • Vauxhall (and Bedford commercial vehicles) supported the war effort throughout both world wars and designed and produced the Churchill tank at its Luton factory
  • Vauxhall led the retail sales charts in 2010 with Corsa, Astra, Meriva, Zafira and Insignia
  • The UK is the 4th largest GM market in the world (following China, the US and Brazil)