Monday, September 25, 2006

Homeless World Cup

Chances are, you are unaware that the 4th Homeless World Cup has kicked-off.

The Homeless World Cup Foundation is a charity that has been set up to fund and support projects based around the highly successful Homeless World Cup.

It’s a street soccer event and this year it is held in Cape Town, South Africa. Football legend Eus├ębio got the tournament underway with the first kick of the competition.

2003 runners-up England have been in summer training with the Manchester United squad and face Hong Kong, Serbia and Kazakhstan in Group A.

Scotland face Group D opponents Frane, Czech Republic and Burundi.

Last years winners Italy have been drawn against Namibia, Kenya and Nigeria.

Some of the rules of street soccer are…

  • Matches consist of two halves of seven minutes each
  • Pitchsize: 22 metres long x 16m wide
  • Goal size: 4 m wide x 1.30m height, depth approx. 1 m
  • Ball size: normal ball used
  • Teams can be all male, all female or mixed
  • Maximum of four players per team on the pitch - three outfield players and goalkeeper
  • Plus four substitutes ('flying' or 'rolling' substitutions apply)
  • Squad must not exceed eight players

The final is to be held on Saturday 30th September.

For more details, visit


Kedge said...

Just had a look on the website for this event and I'm now more confused than an Agentinian at Upton Park.

It's an admirable good cause, so I'm not knocking it, but the visit to the website has left me with a lot of unanswered questions.

For instance, are all the players homeless in their own countries?

I presume the sponsors would then pay for them to travel to South Africa?

Where do they leave their sleeping bags, dogs, cardboard boxes etc? (ok so that was uncalled for and just a cheap joke)

There was plenty of info about the groups/organisation, but little about the team members, their backgrounds and the like. Everything was about how wonderful this all was, South Africa being proud to host it, but very vague on the important background issues. If I sound a bit sceptical, then, well yes I am a bit. Don't ask me why, but something here doesn't seem to ring true. I can't put my finger on it, but I have a nagging suspicion that someone somewhere is going to make money out of this, and it won't just be the homeless. Hopefully I'll be proved wrong.

Anyway, good luck to them all, lets hope the charity can do something positive.

Flicktokick said...

When I was in Berlin during the World Cup I went to see the StreetFootballWorld Festival, which is very similar to the Homeless World Cup. Teams were there from all over the world using football as a way of giving people with problems in their lives or their societies something to work with - a focus in their lives. There was even a united Israel/Palestine team.
The football was played without referees, players simply held there hand up to claim a foul or free kick and play stopped.
The football was great and the spirit in which the games and the whole festival was played was fantastic.
The next festival will be in South Africa in 2006, but the projects ar on-going. In Britain there are schemes in London (patron Gilberto Silva) and Glasgow and it would be great to see some of the professional clubs using their status to really give something back to their communities by promoting schemes in their areas.
More information about the London scheme, and some of the others around the world, can be found at
To conclude on the Homeless World Cup. All the best to Scotland. Fourth last year, let's go at least one better this year and get a medal.

Smart said...

Blimey FlickToKick, you get about a bit!

(and I mean that in a nice way)


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