50 football clubs across Sussex are set to be enhanced thanks to £235,500 worth of investment from the Matchday Support Fund set up by the Premier League, The FA and Government’s Football Foundation.
The Matchday Support Fund was open to eligible National League System Clubs in Steps 1-6, the Welsh Premier League and women's clubs in Tiers 1-5. Under current Government guidelines, fans can attend matches in limited numbers at Steps 3 and below of the National League System and at Tiers 3 and below of the Women’s Football Pyramid.
A total of 1,090 clubs from the National League System, Women's Football Pyramid and Welsh Premier League have benefited from grants through the Matchday Support Fund, which has distributed more than £5.5million.
Funding will allow clubs to put measures in place to make grounds safer for the 2020/21 season, given the risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.anaged by the Football Stadia Improvement Fund (FSIF), which is financed by the Premier League and supports non-league and Women’s Football Pyramid clubs with the cost of improvements to their grounds.
This new investment follows the recent provision of the Pitch and Club Preparation Funds, which saw £8.7m in grants from the Premier League, The FA and Government's Football Foundation awarded to prepare the country’s playing surfaces and facilities for the return of football.
These latest Matchday Support grants will help clubs to make the necessary changes to satisfy the latest FA, Welsh FA and Government guidance, covering two key areas of the matchday experience:
Stadium - grants can help clubs make the physical infrastructure changes required to reopen their stadia in line with the latest guidance. This includes conducting risk assessments and implementing measures, such as reducing capacity and creating capacity for socially distanced movement.
Supporters - grants can also be used to help ensure supporters’ safe travel to and from stadia, as well as their attendance at the game, and the implementation of NHS Track and Trace measures. This could include:
1. The purchase of contactless payment technology.
2. The installation of hand-sanitisation points.
3. Implementing advance ticketing systems.
4. Specialist consultancy support around risk assessments or travel plans.
5. Fan engagement interventions – such as additional signage, stewarding or transport hub.
Our Football Development Manager, Paul Saunders, had this to say: “We are grateful for the Matchday Support Fund grant, which will really take some pressure off the finances of clubs and is will make a huge difference to the safety of our senior teams in Sussex,"
“It's imperative the clubs provide the safest facilities possible for club personnel and supporters in these unprecedented times."
For more information on the Matchday Support Fund please contact the Football Foundation:
T: +44 345 345 4555