Competition classes for eleven and twelve year olds are back: "A good decision"
The Swedish Football Association has decided to reintroduce competition classes for eleven- and twelve-year-olds in international tournaments in the country.
This means that the girls' and boys' teams aged eleven and twelve who wish to compete and count results will be allowed to do so from Gothia Cup 2023.
– It's very nice that everyone gets the opportunity to participate in the Gothia Cup on the same terms, while it's good that we can continue to offer classes where we don't compete, says the competition leader Niclas Andersson Freiholtz.
Playoffs will be conducted and champions will be crowned equally in the older classes of the Gothia Cup. For those who wish to participate in the Gothia Cup without competing and counting results, this option is of course still available. Next year there will be both "regular" eleven and twelve year old classes and classes called Girls 11/12 Friendly respectively Boys 11/12 Friendly. In this way, it's now possible for teams of this age groups to both compete and not to compete. Teams in these ages who have already registered will now be able to choose which class they wish to participate in.
The competition leader Niclas Andersson Freiholtz is happy about the Swedish Football Association's decision.
– We think that it is a good decision. For a tournament like the Gothia Cup where more than half of the teams come from other countries, it's of course positive that those who want to compete can participate on the terms they want when they're in a football tournament, he says and continues:
– It's very nice that everyone gets the opportunity to participate in the Gothia Cup on the same terms, while it's also good that we can continue to offer classes where we don't compete. It's up to the teams if they want to choose to compete or not and more teams are now given the opportunity to compete if they wish to do so.
He sees advantages in being able to offer different options.
– More teams are given the opportunity to participate in a way that suits them. There will of course be teams that want to be in non-competitive classes and then they're guaranteed six games. At the same time, there are those teams that chose not to participate earlier because they wanted to compete and now hopefully participate again as they get the chance to compete as they want. Participating in a knockout tournament is a thrilling feeling for many. Many find it tickling instead of a regular pool game, says Niclas Andersson Freiholtz.