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UEFA and Disney Launch Incredible Initiative To Help More Girls Play Football Through Playmakers

UEFA and Disney have teamed-up to develop a football programme that uses Disney’s world-renowned storytelling to encourage more young girls to exercise regularly and kickstart a lifelong love of football.

Inspired by academic research showing the positive role of storytelling in helping children take up sport,  Playmakers also aims to increase the proportion of girls meeting the World Health Organization’s minimum standards for physical activity – currently, just 16%.

Targeting 5-8 year-old girls not currently playing football, seven UEFA national associations – Scotland, Norway, Belgium, Poland, Austria, Romania, and Serbia – will roll out “Playmakers” through schools, clubs and local communities. More associations are expected to introduce the programme later in the year.

Unlike traditional football programmes, each of Playmaker’s ten initial training sessions follow the narrative of Disney and Pixar’s billion dollar global box office smash hit, Incredibles 2. Equipped with footballs, bibs and cones, trained coaches encourage participants to play the roles of popular characters, such as Elastigirl, Violet, Mr Incredible and Dash, bringing the film’s action scenes to life through movement, teamwork and their imagination.

“If you’re going to teach football through the power of storytelling and play, you have to do it with the best stories and characters in the world, and Disney is the perfect partner for this,” said Nadine Kessler, UEFA Head of Women’s Football. 

“By taking that Disney magic, and implementing the first-ever pan-European girls’ grassroots football programme, we will give any girl the best possible opportunity to fall in love with football.”

As Playmakers rolls out across Europe, new Disney storytelling will be added to the programme.

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