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Reorganizing the youth football competition for the Royal Belgian Football Association

KBVB/URBSFA, the Royal Belgian Football Association, is constantly aiming at reinventing itself in order to be in line with expectations of ever-more demanding football players, clubs and officials. One of the longer-term strategic projects to achieve this ambition is the reformation of the youth competition. KBVB/URBSFA was looking for bottom-up input and ideas from youth referees, club owners, coaches and other football professionals by offering them the opportunity to co-create the new rules of the (youth) game. The ambition, of course, is to attract and keep attracting large numbers of young children choosing football at a young age.

What did we do?

Together with KBVB/URBSFA, we set up the 12e man/12ème homme community, a Consumer Consulting Board (also known as online research community) connecting 100 youth football players who share a passion for football in general and work with youth players more in particular. We organized a 3-week connection with people from all parts of the country and all levels of football clubs to really understand what today’s challenges are and how KBVB/URBSFA can reorganize the competition in such a way that it connects even more with children. We ended up with a long-list of concrete ideas and a list of prioritized business demands the ‘12th man’ is looking for from KBVB/URBSFA when it comes to attracting youth.

KBVB 12e man community

The results

The community provided both concrete and strategic input for the KBVB/URBSFA youth competition reformation team: hands-on ideas, fine-tuned ideas, bottom-up ideas, strategic business priorities, go/no go choices, powerful quotes from participants and as a result a user-centric youth reformation program was created. As of Sept 1st 2015 these impactful changes will be implemented.