Replies to Media ● Jan 06, 2017

FAS’ Reply To Media Query Regarding Children Heading In Football


“The safety of our footballers is of the utmost importance to the Football Association of Singapore (FAS). This is reflected in our various practices, including training methodologies.

“Under the FAS Youth Development Plan, children play small-sided games which focus on passing and dribbling; players only move on to full 11-a-side games at the age of 13. In line with this focus on developing their skills, the rules of the small-sided games are modified to minimise long balls. For example, goalkeepers are required to pass the ball short to their teammates, and for players up to the age of 9, there are kick-ins rather than throw-ins. Training sessions for our children therefore exclude the possible danger for children arising from heading high/long balls.

“We will continue to monitor the situation for any developments, and will make the appropriate changes to ensure the continued welfare of our players if required.”

– “Head of Coach Education and JCOE, Mohamed Basir Ellaya Kutty”

“The safety of our players is of paramount importance. As such, we take a very serious view of concussions and are very careful when dealing with such cases – if there is insufficient recovery time following one, a concussion could lead to lasting damage. The doctors and physiotherapists in FAS use a concussion diagnostic, management and prevention tool called SCAT3 – which is highly recommended by FIFA – to assess players who have suffered concussions before releasing them for training.”

– “FAS Senior Physiotherapist Nurhafizah Abu Sujad”

“In our Grassroots programmes, there are two age groups under the age of 10. The Under-8 category is catered to children aged 7 to 8 years and the Under-10 category for children aged 9 to 10 years.

“Due to the nature of the FAS Cubs Grassroots programme’s training contents – i.e. small sided (3v3 and 5v5) games in a small area with no throw-ins – there is no possibility of the ball travelling in the air and by extension, no possibility of heading.”

– “General Manager of Grassroots and Women’s Football, Julie Teo”