Linx Futsal launch a huge success

Linx Futsal, a programme established by The Lincolnshire Football Association to support developments in the game, launched their inaugural league on Friday 19th January 2018 hosted at Lincoln College.

It was thanks to The FA’s and The Football Foundation’s Futsal Fund that this was made possible. Through the fund, Linx Futsal received brand new Futsal goals, Nike equipment including Futsals and £400 to support the growing Futsal workforce; all of which made it a professional environment for the players providing the ultimate playing experience. One player Adam Thurston, a regular in our 5-a-side programme (Linx5s) said; “it’s a new and exciting format of the game that I’ve never experienced before, it was absolutely class and we can’t wait for the next set of fixtures with the lads”.

The league, hosted once a month, started with seven teams: Grimsby Town FC SET (who had two teams entered), Lincoln City FC SET, Lincoln Team, MSM, FC Grimsby and Bishop Grosseteste University. Sophie Bartup, the Linx Futsal manager said: “It’s great to see seven teams join us for our first league, it’s positive to have Futsal teams who play the game regularly and also players that are new to Futsal come together and the scores were very competitive”.

The evening kicked off with the Lincoln Team playing MSM; MSM are a team that have transitioned from 5-a-side football and came out as victors of their group winning two and drawing one. MSM and the Lincoln Team were joined by GTFC SET A and B, who are Futsal scholars between 16 and 19 years of age playing the game regularly. There were some close games in this group with GTFC SET A drawing 3-3 with both MSM and the Lincoln Team.

The second group had three teams: FC Grimsby, LCFC SET and BG University. FC Grimsby, a well-established team playing Futsal in the Grimsby league, secured victory with two wins from two. This set of fixtures certainly produced lots of goals with FC Grimsby beating LCFC SET 5-1 followed by a LCFC SET victory over BGU that finished 7-3.

Sophie Bartup reiterated the importance of the programme to Futsal within Lincolnshire: “We generated this programme to support developments in the game and provide an opportunity for our Futsal players in Lincolnshire to play competitively. The response and support from our Futsal clubs has been brilliant and to see new teams and also BG University enter our league just shows that Futsal is getting bigger and bigger and we want to ensure that we have a league where players can compete and have the best possible experience. We’ve been fortunate enough to secure funding from The FA and The Football Foundation and we hope to utilise the workforce fund to create a new cohort of Futsal referees, further enhancing the experience for players”.

Since the league launch, the County FA has seen an increase in enquiries around Futsal with two teams already expressing interest in joining the league from February. The Lincolnshire FA’s commitment to developing Futsal echoes their desire to develop other areas of the game with Sophie adding: “We’ve seen success where youth leagues within the country have stopped playing football in the winter months and employed Futsal provision for their young players. This forward thinking approach and ability to adapt is something we’re keen to initiate within Lincolnshire however we’re firstly prioritising that the Linx Futsal programme is sustainable for the future”.

All teams will be back in Lincoln on the 16th February to commence their league fixtures which will culminate in June.

For further information on the Linx Futsal programme, please contact Sophie Bartup at Lincolnshire FA.

Email: Sophie.bartup@lincolnshirefa.com

Phone: 01522 596584

Mobile: 07813459589

Twitter: @SophieLFA

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