This article is really only for our English readers. To everyone else, hopefully you’ll get your own People’s Cup soon!
It’s back for 2017, bigger and better than ever: an FA and BBC sponsored UK-wide traditional 5-a-side football competition for the common man (and woman)!
The third national English 5-a-side tournament
In 2015 the English FA brought back what the people wanted: a knockout 5-a-side tournament to crown the best team in England. Thousands of you participated, making it a phenomenal success.
In 2016 the competition moved up a notch, with the addition of new competition categories and even more people getting involved. In just two years, over 60,000 players have got involved!
Building on that success, 2017 looks like it could be the best year yet. So here’s what it’s all about and how you can make sure that you’re a part of it.
Things move fast in the People’s Cup: the competition will take place over just three rounds:
- 24-26 February – Round 1, qualifying round held at multiple national centres over the country.
- 24-26 March – semi-finals, held at eight regional venues
- Saturday 29th & Sunday 30th April – The finals (venue TBC) – in 2015 it was Manchester, in 2016 it was Sheffield.
The venues used will be a mixture of Goals, Powerleague and Play Football venues. The competition will be run in 14 categories, with pretty much everyone, male or female, from teens upwards, catered for. The categories are the same as in 2016, but this year they have split the disability category into various sub-categories and added the ‘University’ category:
- Adult Male (16+)
- Adult Female (16+)
- U16 Boys
- U16 Girls
- U14 Boys
- U14 Girls
- Male Veterans (35+)
- Female Veterans (35+)
- Walking football mixed (50+)
- Youth Disability Mixed
- Adult male disability
- Adult female disability
- Male university (students only)
- Female universtity (students only)
Read more at http://www.thefa.com/the-fa-peoples-cup/faqs
Why you need to be involved
In England, traditional 5-a-side still is the people’s game (by participation numbers), so this is going to be BIG. Last year over 35,000 players participated, making this absolutely massive! You don’t want to be the one left out for this.
How would you like to be able to say that you played a part in one of the biggest tournaments ever? And what an opportunity to test yourself against the very best teams in the country, or at the very least have a team-building jolly down to your local venue.
Secondly, it’s free. Most tournaments ask for a fee to cover the costs, but this one is on the FA’s tab, so there’s absolutely nothing lost by entering. So no matter if you’re an established team or just 5 friends, workmates, students, or drinking partners who just fancy giving it a crack – you’ve got nothing to lose.
And thirdly, should you be a lucky winner, you’ll be given a VIP trip to the FA Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Saturday 27 May 2017 to swan around acting like the champions you will deservedly be. What’s more, as the BBC are getting involved, there’s a chance you’ll appear on the BBC’s Get Inspired website, so make sure that you get your hair cut and wash your kit before you turn out for the later rounds.
How to get involved
The first round begins on 24-26 February 2017 so act fast. Registration closes on Sunday 19th February so get in fast and early as there are limited places at each qualifying centre and, whilst they’re catering for a lot of teams, demand will be high too!
Tip: even if you don’t have a full team of your own – you can even register as an individual. This feature will enable people to be matched up with other like-minded players to form teams.
Good luck everyone – If you’re entering a team, I’d love to hear from you in the comments below! I’m off to try and round up a team of my own…
If you want to find other tournaments, check out our tournament directory.