This week the Premier League has launched Creating Chances, a showcase of the huge amount of positive work that top-flight football does in the community, and for good causes and charities.
Twenty players from across the League - including Michael Ball from our Club - came together to highlight this work, and show precisely how the Premier League and their clubs are more committed to this side of the game than ever.
In new research, Deloitte demonstrates the Premier League and its twenty clubs will invest an estimated £122 million next season in community projects, charities and other good causes, representing an increase of over 50% since Deloitte’s last audit assessment in 2003.
The core element of Creating Chances is a new initiative called ‘Places for Players’, which will involve 200 Premier League players supporting a number of charities and good causes in September, raising awareness of and funds for the work that these organisations do. Over 400 good causes will benefit either by players getting involved in their work or from a £2,000 cash donation direct from the Premier League.
Another great opportunity for fans, introduced as part of Creating Chances, is Your Shot. Your Shot will see each Barclays Premier League club offer one of their most deserving fans the opportunity to win a unique, once-in-a-lifetime match day experience.
Also, there is Premier League All Stars, a 7-a-side knockout competition to be played during the Creating Chances week of action in September. More information about this will feature on mcfc.co.uk soon.
Sixty lucky fans will win the opportunity to play with Premier League legends and celebrities in teams representing all 20 Barclays Premier League clubs. Ravenelli, Merson, Wilkins and Gullit are back in training and more big names from the worlds of football and showbiz are to come.
The teams will play in official kits and compete for a £300,000 prize fund which will be donated to charities of the clubs’ choice.
Richard Scudamore, Chief Executive of the Premier League, said: "Community engagement is now woven into the fabric of football and the size and scope of that commitment today really is something of which the Premier League, our clubs and the players can be extremely proud. Creating Chances is a means of showcasing all of the work that takes place right across the League on a daily basis and will help to further strengthen the relationship we have with countless charities, good causes and our fans.”
James Purnell, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, also attended the launch and said: “Football clubs have a unique position in their communities. They are now helping to raise standards of education, working with police to cut crime and anti-social behaviour and also re-investing millions of pounds into football facilities for the public. I am pleased that Government can play a part in Creating Chances, and help highlight this important side to the Premier League’s business.”