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Young footballers in Respect campain

PUBLISHED: 15:44 06 November 2008 | UPDATED: 12:12 03 July 2010

Gorleston FC Youth players promoting the Respect campaign.

Gorleston FC Youth players promoting the Respect campaign.

Young footballers from Gorleston are fully embracing the FA's Respect programme.

The project is the FA's response to abuse and intimidation of referees and poor behaviour by over-competitive parents and coaches in grassroots football.

Young footballers from Gorleston are fully embracing the FA's Respect programme.

The project is the FA's response to abuse and intimidation of referees and poor behaviour by over-competitive parents and coaches in grassroots football.

In a show of support, Gorleston FC Youth and the Norfolk & Suffolk Youth League are now making Respect part of the code of conduct for players, spectators, coaches and volunteers.

On Sunday, the under-9s A team travelled to Kirkley & Pakefield for a League Cup fixture, proudly wearing their special new away kits for the first time.

Like the international teams who took part in the summer's European Championships in Austria and Switzerland, each shirt displays a Respect badge on the arm, in promotion of the FA's campaign to improve the standard of behaviour at all levels of the game.

James Lawson, secretary of Gorleston Youth FC and manager of the under-9s A team, said: “All managers at Gorleston Youth FC are fully aware of what the programme involves and will be actively implementing it at all of our games.

“The team are proud to have attained the league's sporting award for the previous two seasons and so in this sense, we are fully supportive of the Respect programme and what it aims to achieve. We were delighted to include the Respect logo on the team's new kit after being given the green light by the FA to promote Respect in this way.”

Norfolk County FA supplied the club with a new Respect barrier for Sunday's game, a feature that is set to become widespread at youth clubs across the county in the coming weeks and months.

Lawson added: “The Respect barrier worked to great effect on Sunday, giving the players more room for throw-ins and allowing them to concentrate on the game. It also acts as a physical barrier, reminding spectators of their designated area and the message of the campaign on a wider level.”

Raffi Coverdale, Norfolk County FA's lead Respect officer, said: “In incorporating the Respect logo on their new kit, Gorleston Youth have shown great initiative in looking to promote the Respect programme.

“Respect aims to tackle the issues that people involved in the game want to see addressed. Both the club and the league have shown their desire to freely throw their weight behind the programme, and this is a great example of the positive steps being taken by our clubs in Norfolk to ensure Respect is a success.”


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