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A traditional team sport played between two teams of eleven players, in which players attempt to kick a ball into the goal that their opponents are defending. The game was born in England but has since become a global phenomenon.

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The Basics

  • A simple game which involves kicking a round ball into the net behind a rectangular goal, marked by wooden or medal goalposts. Players will generally score with their feet, but can actually use any part of their body apart from their hands and arms.
  • Each team will employ a designated goalkeeper, who is permitted to use his hands and arms within a marked area, to try and prevent the opposition team from scoring. Other players will take up predetermined positions dependent on their skill set.
  • Various other rules are in place to prevent foul play or other underhand or unsportsmanlike conduct, e.g. the offside rule, which prevents attacking players from waiting by the opposition’s goal, so they are best placed to shoot when the ball comes to them.


  • The FA Cup, England’s national cup competition, is the oldest association football competition in the world. It was first held at the climax of the 1871-72 season, with Wanderers defeating Royal Engineers 1-0 at the Kensington Oval.
  • As well as competing in domestic competitions, including the FA Cup and the Premier League (or Football League), the best teams from each country will also compete in continental competitions, such as the Champions League – previously the European Cup.
  • An international competition, the World Cup, has also been held for national teams since 1930. Brazil is the competition’s most successful team having won the tournament on five occasions. England has won it once, in 1966.

Famous Competitors

  • Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi – the Portuguese and his Argentine counterpart have established themselves as two of the game’s biggest icons over the last decade, winning virtually every personal and team accolade going with their respective clubs, Real Madrid and Barcelona. Ronaldo, who previously played for Manchester United, also tasted international success in 2016.
  • David Beckham – despite retiring in 2013, Becks is still arguably the biggest global star in English football, with his reputation and adoration around the world having long-since reached unparalleled levels. The former Manchester United and Real Madrid midfielder was best known for his 115 international caps, which included 58 as captain over a six year period.

National Governing Body

Football Association (FA) – please click here for more information.


  • Intra-School Primary: Competition Card
  • Intra-School Primary: Challenge Card
  • Intra-School Secondary
  • Local Inter-School
  • Inclusive Specific Sport Format

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