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Published 23 March 2022 4 min read

England stars ask grassroots players to 'Show Some Respect'

Written by:

Rebecca Lewin

A group of England men's and women's players back latest England Football campaign to cut out abuse of referees and officials
Harry Kane and Fran Kirby are amongst several top England stars urging grassroots players to ‘Show Some Respect’ and think about their behaviour on and around the football pitch in a new campaign by England Football. 
Launching as part of the wider England Football ‘Respect’ campaign, the pair join Trent Alexander-Arnold, Alex Greenwood, Jordan Nobbs, Jess Carter, Raheem Sterling, Kalvin Phillips and Reece James in a series of films which see the players call on their grassroots counterparts to focus on their own game, instead of disrespecting opposition players, coaches, fans and referees. 
Featuring ten short-form videos, released across England Football and local County FA digital channels, the films see senior England stars deliver the series of direct lines below that encourage players to ‘Show Some Respect’ and think about their actions on the pitch. 
- Harry Kane: “Get in the game. Don’t let them get in your head. Show Some Respect.”
- Jordan Nobbs: “Every race. Every ability. Every Saturday. Show Some Respect” 
- Reece James: “Your team-mates want to see your skills, not your hate. Show Some Respect.”
- Fran Kirby: “Let your feet do the talking. Show Some Respect.”
- Raheem Sterling: “Why are you wasting your breath arguing? There’s goals to be scored. Show Some Respect.” 
- Jess Carter: “Break records. Make waves. Cause absolute scenes. But first, Show Some Respect.”
Showcasing how good behaviour is integral to the enjoyment and safe running of grassroots football, the ‘Show Some Respect’ films are a personal plea to encourage players to help make the game the best it can be, and to eliminate abuse against anyone involved with the game. 
The campaign is specifically targeted at 16 to 18-year-old players, in line with England Football data gathered from grassroot team representatives that rank their opponents ‘Respect scores’ after matches. This specifically ranks the oppositions’ behaviour on and around the pitch to each other, coaches, spectators, and match officials. 
From this data, the 16 to 18-year-old bracket of grassroots footballers received the worst ‘Respect scores’ from their opponents, with totals of 81% for U16s, 78.5% for U17s, and 79.8% for U18s, in comparison to 96% for U7s, 95.9% for U8s and a range of 93.4% to 82.3% for U9s to U15s.
Three Lions captain Kane said: “As players, we know that coaches, fans, our opposition, and referees are integral to the game we love so much. No matter what level we play at, football can be an emotional game but there is never a place for abuse or bad behaviour. The ‘Show Some Respect’ campaign from England Football gives us players a chance to encourage footballers up and down the country to focus on enjoying the parts of the game they can control.”
And Lionesses ace Kirby added: “Any game of competitive football should feel fair and safe for everyone involved on and off the pitch. In games, it’s easy to get caught up in the heat of the moment, but there is always a line that should not be crossed. Collectively as players, we all can do better, and that’s why I am supporting the ‘Show Some Respect’ campaign.”
James Kendall, director of football development at the FA, said; “We're pleased to launch the latest iteration of England Football’s Respect campaign aimed at encouraging better behaviour on and around football pitches. We’re calling on all grassroots players at all levels to Show Some Respect by concentrating on their own games rather than taking situations out on coaches, opposition players, fans or referees.”
In partnership with Nationwide, England Football’s ‘Respect campaign’ comes as part of a dedicated effort to help cut dissent in football matches across England by encouraging players to think about the people they are speaking to.