FEATURE: PART I: The Futsal Player Pathway - Exploring Player Opportunities in the USA & Globally
Updated: Nov 30, 2019
Washington, DC, USA - April, 8, 2019 | Futsal Player Pathway - Part I
This Pivot Futsal article will serve as Part I of II in aiming to identify the current Futsal player pathway and ultimately, better centralize the pathway that a young, rising Futsal player could consider following step by step across the globe to reach the highest level of Futsal.
We will aim to use Part I here as an exploratory sounding board for the current status of Futsal progress and direction. Within we will look to crowdsource thoughts and ideas from our global Futsal community that should be considered as we aggregate pathway recommendations for those who seek. Part II will feature these organized Futsal pathway considerations and recommendations in the form of an article/report.
This two part article series will point toward generating discussion to drive the United States Futsal pathway forward while we will also aim to broaden the approach and highlight countries that are providing quality Futsal resources and opportunities around the world.
A few highlights of current notable pathway touch points in regions across the globe include the emphasis on development-driven Futsal youth academies in various regions (ie. Brazil & Spain), University-level Futsal competition, UEFA's U19 EURO Futsal Championships, Youth Olympic Futsal Tournament, thriving professional Futsal leagues (ie. LNFS - Spain, LPF - Portugal & Serie A - Italy), and major interntournaments surrounding the FIFA Futsal World Cup.
Let's take a look at the below graphic which illustrates the current Futsal pathway in the United States, along with some prospective opportunities for consideration. Further, we will begin to explore case study questions from across the globe and identify best practices for review.
WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU!
Join us in helping shape a holistic Futsal pathway in the United States and globally. We have a strong sense of potential directions the player pathway landscape could go but it's vital to hear from the core Futsal community and leadership to influence direction in our findings in Part II. Take a look at a few of our focus questions below and email us your thoughts, vision & discussion points.
United States Futsal | Strategic Vision Considerations
Futsal & Soccer Relationship: Should we work toward separating Futsal and soccer as two different sports for a unique Futsal player pathway? How can we continue to keep Futsal aligned with the soccer player pathway as well?
Year-Round Futsal: How can we create an environment for year-round Futsal opportunities or expanding on the current predominant winter season?
School System Futsal Integration, Education & Competition: How can we better integrate Futsal into primary schools, competitive school environments, and ultimately, collegiate Futsal pathway opportunities?
Resources: How can the US Soccer Federation establish a cohesive working relationship with managing Futsal bodies to move both Futsal & soccer forward?
United States Managing Futsal Body: How can the Futsal managing bodies (ie. US Futsal, United Futsal, US Youth Futsal, and others) collaborate or work independently to provide an all-encompassing pathway for rising Futsal players?
Facilities: How can we better collaborate with all sports stakeholders to increase the inventory of Futsal compatible facilities?
Professional Futsal: How can we better establish a central, thriving United States professional & semi-professional Futsal leagues for men and women? A few organizations have made strides but still embrace challenges (ie. National League of Professional Futsal [NLPF], Major League Futsal [MLF], National Futsal Premier League [NFPL], Professional Futsal League [PFL] and others).
Age-Specific Pathway: How can we narrow a strategic pathway for youth players to rise through the ranks with quality development opportunities? How can we set the end goal to be an established men’s or women’s national Futsal team?
Inclusive Pathway: How can we ensure quality pathway opportunities women/girls and underserved communities?
Case Studies to Consider: Are there specific countries that are sustaining efficient Futsal pathway models that the United States should aim to embrace (ie. Spain, Italy, Brazil, Portugal, Argentina, Russia, Iran or others)?
Global Futsal | Strategic Vision Considerations
Top-Tier Futsal Federations: Which Federations are prime case studies in how to best support both men’s and women’s Futsal and soccer to move the country forward?
Futsal & Soccer Global Infrastructure: In the shadow of soccer/football, how does Futsal build upon current infrastructure to jointly support and independently grow as its own sport globally? Are there structures that the global soccer (other other sports) are using that Futsal can embrace?
Resources & Investment: Who are the key stakeholders to solidify the presence of global corporate sponsors and global broadcasting to further develop Futsal as a global game?
Unified Global Pathway: How can we unite a global pathway for all rising youth players to all be striving for a similar end target?
Inclusive Pathway & Education: How can we better systemize and regulate the sport across the globe to create a level playing field for rising countries/regions?
Global Competitions & Awareness: The FIFA Futsal World Cup is the pinnacle of Futsal - how do we develop more high-level events to build upon ongoing momentum for the sport?
Various Global Managing Futsal Bodies: On the heels of kickoff of the 2019 AMF Futsal World Cup, is there value in dedicating more time, resources, and pathway emphasis to that side of Futsal? Are there other independent Futsal bodies providing value in driving the game forward?
Send us your considerations and ideas via email (email@example.com) or social media (facebook.com/pivotfutsal) to be featured in Part II. Thanks in advance to all as we continue to unite, educate and inspire the global Futsal community!
MARK WYSOCKI, Pivot Futsal, Founder & Chief Editor
Mark Wysocki is an accomplished sports business & Futsal professional with 10+ years in the sports industry supporting some of the world’s leading corporate brands and rising small businesses. Wysocki has been very connected to the Futsal community over the years across the United States & internationally as a consultant, professional Futsal player, program director, strategist, coach, and advocate of the sport.