Junior and Youth Grassroots Football Culture: The Forgotten Game, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Junior and Youth Grassroots Football Culture

The Forgotten Game, 1st Edition

Edited by Jimmy O'Gorman


136 pages

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Football is ubiquitously acknowledged as ‘The Global Game’ and/or ‘The People’s Game’ – everyday all-encompassing terms familiar to anyone with an interest in football which illustrate, albeit nebulously, the game’s international reach and popularity. Yet much academic and popular attention has been, and continues to be, narrowly centred on topics pertaining to the elite and professional aspects of the game. At a time when there appears to be an ever-widening gap between the grassroots and elite levels of the sport, this book brings together, for the first time, a collection of research articles dedicated solely to youth and junior grassroots football. The intention is to generate future inquiry, encourage theoretical debate and stimulate empirical research on topics and issues within the relatively marginalised area of the game that is youth and junior grassroots football. The collection represents a preliminary consideration of what is already currently known about grassroots football and, no less importantly, point towards what remains unknown and under-researched but which deserves much more attention than has been given hitherto. As such, the collection includes contributions from practitioners and researchers alike. Topics included range from the provision, organisation and development of grassroots football in one national association, to broader issues such as the sources of enjoyment in participation, the lived experiences of junior players and coaches, to the causes of youth dropout from football. In addition, the significance of social stratification and various forms of social division which structure children’s participation in grassroots football are discussed. These include female participation and the role of elite female role models, and issues relating to the participation of immigrant youth. The book is intended to appeal to practitioners, academics and football enthusiasts alike. This book was originally published as a special issue of Soccer & Society.


'An excellent, interesting and informative book' - VeriteSport.org

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: developing the research agenda in junior and youth grassroots football culture

Jimmy O’Gorman

2. The English Football Association Charter for Quality: the development of junior and youth grassroots football in England

Les Howie and Wayne Allison

3. Children’s voices in mini soccer: an exploration of critical incidents

Jimmy O’Gorman and Kenny Greenough

4. Enjoyment in youth soccer: its portrayals among 12- to 14-year-olds

Hege E. Tjomsland, Torill Larsen, Ingrid Holsen, Lars T. Ronglan, Oddrun Samdal and Bente Wold

5. Elite footballers as role models: promoting young women’s football participation

Carrie Dunn

6. A systematic review of drop-out from organized soccer among children and adolescents

Viviene A. Temple and Jeff R. Crane

7. Transcultural football. Trajectories of belonging among immigrant youth

Max Mauro

8. A generational divide within the class-based production of girls in American youth soccer

Lisa Swanson

9. Exploring the everyday realities of grass-roots football coaching: towards a relational perspective

Paul Potrac, Lee Nelson and Jimmy O’Gorman

About the Editor

Jimmy O’Gorman is a Senior Lecturer in Sport Development at Edge Hill University, UK. His research interests and expertise focus on the development and implementation of youth sport policy and programmes, ranging from community/grassroots settings to the development of participation and performance. He has undertaken research and consultancy on behalf of local and national organisations in this context.

About the Series

Sport in the Global Society – Contemporary Perspectives

The social, cultural (including media) and political study of sport is an expanding area of scholarship and related research. While this area has been well served by the Sport in the Global Society series, the surge in quality scholarship over the last few years has necessitated the creation of Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives. The series will publish the work of leading scholars in fields as diverse as sociology, cultural studies, media studies, gender studies, cultural geography and history, political science and political economy. If the social and cultural study of sport is to receive the scholarly attention and readership it warrants, a cross-disciplinary series dedicated to taking sport beyond the narrow confines of physical education and sport science academic domains is necessary. Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives will answer this need.

Learn more…

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