Today is a landmark occasion in football as the process for capturing the details of more than 1200 venues and an estimated 1,600 pitches commences with the conduct of the 2018 Football Facilities Audit.
Similar to a national census, the audit is a collaborative venture between Football NSW, Northern NSW Football and Capital Football. Conducted over the months of April to July, it will establish what facilities football currently has for its use, their quality and usage patterns, and given the growth and the pace of new players joining the game, what will be the sport’s needs going forward.
Clubs and Associations across the state will work together to conduct the most comprehensive analysis of football facilities since the last audit conducted in 2010 as part of Australia’s 2022 FIFA World Cup Bid. The 2018 Football Facilities Audit will help key stakeholders in making better informed and strategic decisions and will be the starting point for lobbying government and councils for greater investment to support the overwhelming growth in demand for the game.
The results of the Audit will provide accurate and up-to-date data detailing the quality and quantity of existing facilities, current usage, as well as potential barriers around future use. Improving the quality of a playing field, providing floodlights that allow night games and additional training, and change room facilities that cater for both men and women are important steps in improving the overall player experience in safe and conducive environments. Combined with geotagging of players residences, heat maps of ethnic concentrations, electoral boundaries, regional growth trends and other demographic information, the analysis will provide the most comprehensive set of data ever gathered by a sporting body.
Football NSW CEO Stuart Hodge stated “the 2018 Football Facilities Audit will provide an important insight into current and future trends as well as facility needs to help guide the development of our ongoing strategies moving forward. Further, it will assist in advocating for more and improved facilities considering that football remains the largest participation and number one sport in Australia”.
“Football is the most popular sport in NSW with over 400,000 registered participants with a player base 22% larger than all other football codes combined. Many of our facilities are inadequate especially when it comes to meeting the needs of female players, which is concerning given that this aspect of our game continues to grow with more than a quarter of registered players being female”.
Football NSW has partnered with Melbourne based company Inside Edge, a world leader in this area, who have specifically designed software that will allow the sport to capture data utilising the latest in mobile technology. Football NSW’s Facilities & Advocacy Unit will work closely with Associations, Clubs, Local Councils and Schools to collect the necessary information to complete the auditing process.
For further information regarding the 2018 Football Facilities Audit contact the Facilities & Advocacy Unit on 1300 213 771 or click HERE.