Sunday league football
Getting involved in local football
Sunday league football provides a great way to try and get fit as well as being an excellent way to socialize. Typically, park football is just as much about the drinking as it is about the game itself!
If you turn out for a Sunday league football side, then expect to find a real mix of players and footballing abilities, from the bunch of men with hangovers running off last night's drinking session, to the younger and fitter lads who progressed from the youth side who still want to play competitive 11-a-side regularly.
Sunday league football has its drawbacks. There often operates a 'closed shop' policy whereby any newcomer to the side can expect to be warming the bench as a substitute for quite some time since the selection policy of the side is often not based on ability but who has known the team manager the longest!
Sunday league football is often quite a 'dirty' game – dirty in the sense of loads of foul play going on. Sadly, players are not afforded much protection by referees so you really have to keep your wits about you to avoid that scything challenge or stray elbow. And the most you can expect if you do get caught by a nastly tackle is treatment from the 'magic sponge' or spray from a can of Deep Heat.
Putting aside the negatives, Sunday league football can still be a great way of getting active. After all, there are risks associated in playing any sport. Most leagues are open to everyone from 18 years of age onwards, so don’t be shocked to see a 40 or even 50 year old man strutting around the field trying to prove his best years are still in front of him.
However, the average age of a pub footballer will be mid twenties to mid thirties. Younger players around 18 might find the physical side of this type of game a little overpowering at first, as the other players will be older, stronger and more physical to what they are used to from the youth teams they would have previously played in.
Sunday league football is relatively cheap to take part in. Players will have to pay a small signing on fee at the beginning of the year and weekly subs of a few pounds towards the washing of the kit and the payment of the referee. Players will also have to pay the subsequent fees from any bookings or sending offs they notch up throughout the season.