FA Playmaker truly FOR ALL
The FA Playmaker supported by BT, is an entry-level football course for both current and future volunteers in the grassroots game.
It is for anyone who needs some tools to improve their weekly football experiences and is a course very much for all.
Recently, Sas Granville, a player for Brighton LGBT+ Sports Society (BLAGSS), completed The FA Playmaker showing it really is For All, as someone with a disability.
Sas completed the course with the help of Sharon Muxworthy (The FA’s Women & Girls’ Coach Development Officer), and she couldn’t be happier.
“JT (Justine Thompson, BLAGSS Coach) did the Playmaker course, and she said to me that she thought I should give it a go.
“She said Sharon would help me, so I just thought ‘why not?’ and gave it a go. It was a bit difficult at times for me, but I managed to do it!
“Football’s a massive passion of mine! Since I was little and from a young age I used to play for the Brighton & Hove Disability team. I stopped football for a while though before finding out about BLAGSS through Gig Buddies.
“I wasn’t sure at first about coming into mainstream football, but I got persuaded and ever since then I’ve managed to go!
“It’s been so overwhelming because all of the girls try their hardest to get me involved. JT has since told me to bring my whistle to training and set up training sessions and all the girls are so excited for me I think.”
The FA Playmaker supported by BT, was launched last year, and Sharon Muxworthy believes it is the perfect introduction to coaching, hoping more people like Sas will follow.
“The key thing with the Playmaker course is that it’s free and gives anyone the opportunity to access it. For some people to do a whole course can be quite overwhelming and too big of a commitment, whereas Playmaker allows you to dip in and dip out.
“With Sas, we did an hour the first time, then we tried to keep it to 30-45 minutes after that. We went through it on separate screens and locations in lockdown, but now we’re out of lockdown, there’s no reason why two friends can’t sit down and support each other.
“But mainly, it takes away that overwhelming fear of applying for a course because you can just sign up and have a go. That’s exactly what Sas did, despite being a little apprehensive to begin with.
“I feel so privileged to have worked with Sas on this journey, and I’m really glad I’m here at the start of it so I can see where it goes.”
Now Sas has started, the bug has well and truly been caught. There are no limits to how far she believes she can go on her coaching journey.
“It has opened my eyes up to more than just the playing side of things, and now I have the Playmaker, I can play a bit of football, do a bit of coaching and mix it up a bit.
“I’ve since had conversations with Jade (the Development Lead here at Sussex County FA), about doing a refereeing course because the girls here tend to listen to me, so I might make a good referee!
“Without the support of Sharon and JT I wouldn’t have been able to achieve what I have and with JT getting me involved with coaching more at training, it’s amazing.
Sas should really provide inspiration for not just persons with a disability, but any aspiring coach that isn’t sure where to start. Her determination to make her peers proud is admirable, and the support she has received shows what a great community football can be.
For more information about The FA Playmaker please contact:
T: 01903 766855