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Frequently asked questions

We've copied a selection of Frequently Asked Questions below, just click on a question to reveal the answer.

General

What is Football Aid?

The concept of Football Aid is simple - to allow fans - who have only been able to dream about it - the chance to experience the thrill of match day: to pull on their exclusive personalised shirt in the changing rooms, walk down the tunnel to the sound of a cheering crowd, step out onto the hallowed turf and represent their team in a never to be forgotten 90 minutes of football!

You'll also be raising valuable charity funds at the same time, with proceeds benefitting charitable projects nominated by our clubs, as well as projects nominated by our parent charity Field of Dreams.

Visit the About Us section to learn all about Football Aid, from our history, to who our key supporters are.

When do the Football Aid events take place?

This varies from year to year and from Club to Club, but in general the Events take place at the end of the Football season from April - June. For specific information on your Team's events, visit the Play page and select your chosen Team page.

Can the payment for my place be regarded as a Charitable Donation?

The payment you make for your place is to Football Aid, the trading subsidiary of the grant-making charity, Field of Dreams. As you will receive a benefit in return for your payment, it cannot be classed for taxable reasons as a charitable donation and therefore the Government’s Gift Aid scheme does not apply. Profits from the Football Aid programme are given to Field of Dreams who then award grants to a wide selection of charitable causes. For more information please visit our Field of Dreams page.

Will the team be mixed gender?

Football Aid delivers competitive matches at senior professional football clubs for fans over the age of 18. The matches are sanctioned by the governing bodies of the Countries they are played in for example the Football Association, Scottish Football Association and Football Association of Wales in the UK, and in accordance with established worldwide rules on mixed gender football - and to reflect the authenticity and uniqueness of our product offering - participation in our adult games is designated as single sex.

As most participating clubs are limited to one game in association with Football Aid, we have to target the majority fan base for our charity fundraising matches. Therefore, as our matches are single-sex, at this time all the current Football Aid Events are open to men only, over the age of 18.

However we're always looking at ways to make games for women available and in 2009 we teamed up with Wrigley's Extra to organise a women's match at Everton's Goodison Park. The match featured stars from Hollyoaks, members of the Everton Ladies team, as well as winners from the Wrigley's Extra 90+ Competition, with the teams being managed by Teddy Sheringham and Pat Nevin. The event was a great success, however it was only made possible thanks to the sponsorship of Wrigley's who made a generous donation to cover the costs of the game. These costs included purchasing the strips, personalising them with names and numbers as well as travel and accommodation costs for our staff etc, and it's likely we would need financial backing from a sponsor to enable us to offer a similar game again.

We very much hope that sometime in the future, as more women over the age of 18 continue to actively take part in competitive football, we will be able to generate the interest required to make women only games financially feasible for us to host.

Can I purchase a position as a Gift for someone else?

Yes, you can choose to buy a position for someone for a Xmas, Birthday or other present and then nominate that person to play in the game. You simply create a registration in your own name, then once you have purchased the position using your own login details you can then "allocate" the position to the person receiving the gift, after they've been informed they are due to play.

Please see the STEP 2: ALLOCATING YOUR POSITION section of our Buying Guide for full details on how to Allocate a position.

Please note: You may wish to contact us before allocating the position to ensure the nominated player isn't notified by e-mail or by post before you get the chance to inform them yourself.

How do I keep up to date with the latest developments at Football Aid?

That's easy, keep visiting the website and our Social Media channels!

Top news stories about Football Aid's latest developments can be found in our News section, upcoming Event details can be found in our Book & Play section and if you'd like to receive e-mail updates why not Register Now to be the first to hear about our hottest news, offers and competitions?

We're also extremely active on Social Media as well, so make sure and follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or YouTube to keep yourself informed.

In addition, keep an eye on our participating Club's websites and match-day programmes, local and national newspapers or television and radio for stories about Football Aid and the people taking part. 

Please Note: You can choose to subscribe (or unsubscribe) from the Football Aid mailing list at any time by visiting your User Account section and updating the Contact information.

How does Football Aid raise money?

By hosting football Events at the the majority of the UK's largest Clubs!

Fans take part in a unique range of football based experiential products, including our original Live the Dream Event (which allows fans to play a full 90 minute match on the pitch of the Club they support) as well as our Legends Master Class training Events, putting fans through the drills, thrills and spills experienced by the pros during training sessions. To find out more about our Events, visit our Book & Play section.

Positions in our Events can be secured in a variety of ways; positions are available in our Fixed Price - Buy Now & Sponsored to Play schemes and positions are also made available in our online Bidding auction. For full information on taking part yourself, visit our step-by-step How To Get Involved section and for detailed information on how to purchase a position visit our Buying Guide.

Alternatively, donations can be made straight to our parent charity - Field of Dreams, these can be made by credit card via the website, making a bank transfer or by sending a cheque in the post. Full details of the charities and good causes supported can be found in our Field of Dreams section.

Taking part

How do I secure a Position in a Football Aid Event?

Positions can be secured in a variety of ways; Buy Now meaning the position can be bought outright at a fixed price, Sponsored to Play allowing fans to pay an initial deposit and fundraise their way to their Field of Dreams and finally our online Bidding auction which normally takes place in January-March every year. For full information, we would advise you to read our Buying Guide. 

How old do I have to be to take part?

Each Event page will state clearly who is eligible to take part, but at this time the minimum age for both participating in a Football Aid event and bidding in the Football Aid auction is 18 years of age.

The main reason is because of the gambling laws in the UK that forbid those under 18 to gamble (our positions are available for online bidding which is a form of gambling) and also because of the rules governing youth football participation and the checks that have to be done on those that work with and supervise them on the day.

When are Positions made available?

Positions in Football Aid events can be purchased through our Buy Now,Sponsored to Play and Bidding Schemes and these are made available during two separate Auction Periods. In the Auction Period 1 (normally August - December), positions are available through our Buy Now and Sponsored to Play schemes only. In Auction Period 2 (normally January - March), positions are available in our online Bidding auction, with limited Buy Now availability.

For full details, visit our Buying Guide.

Do Football Aid use e-mail for all communications?

The vast majority of correspondence regarding our Events will be sent by e-mail to the e-mail address that you supply us with when you Register. However, in certain circumstances; when contacting you quickly is a priority, we may choose to contact you by telephone using one of your registered phone numbers.

Please note: E-mails are sent to the e-mail address you register with, so it is your responsibility to ensure that your registered e-mail account is set up so that e-mails we send to you are not treated as Junk Mail and deleted before you have the opportunity to read them. Football Aid cannot accept responsibility for any e-mails that we send to you, that you subsequently fail to receive.

If I don't get in this year, is there a way of guaranteeing a position for next year?

No. If you do not gain a place this year, the same rules of application will apply for next year. There will be no pre-held positions, except in some circumstances for sponsors or corporate places.

If I can't make it on the day, can I just send a friend to take my place for me?

No. Any replacements will have to be decided by Football Aid and all cases will be treated on a separate basis. Please see question 3.9) on injuries and cancellations below for further clarification.

How fit do I have to be to play in a Football Aid game?

We always like to say that Football Aid Matches are open to players of all ages (over 18), all levels of footballing ability and all levels of fitness. All we ask is that you are sufficiently fit enough to play and enjoy the time you pay for!

The playing sides are split into 45 and 90 minute positions, therefore to enjoy the experience you should be sufficiently fit to play for the allotted time you have paid for.

Do I have to Register to take part in a Football Aid Event?

Yes. If you want to take part in one of our Events or just wish to be kept up to date with news about Football Aid by e-mail, click on Register Now and fill in the simple registration form. This ensures all participants have agreed to Football Aid’s Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Buying a position

What if I get injured, or can't make the Match for any reason, will I get a refund?

Football Aid recognises that there may be circumstances, such as illness, injury or other personal circumstances, in which you may no longer be able to participate in a Football Aid Match.

In the event of such circumstances, or your awareness of the possibility of such circumstances, you must notify Football Aid immediately of your inability, or suspected inability to participate in a Football Aid Match.

It would then be your responsibility to find someone to take your position in the Match. Any replacement would then have to contact Football Aid immediately to make sure they are registered on our website and therefore have agreed to the terms and conditions. Provided you find someone Football Aid would then re-allocate your position. Please be aware that if your shirt has already been printed you would either have to cover the costs of purchasing a new personalised shirt or your replacement would have to wear your shirt on the day.

If you aren't able to find a replacement yourself, Football Aid may be able to find a suitable Reserve player to take your place in the Match. Provided a Reserve can be found, Football Aid will offer you a refund of the Position Price paid by you, less any reasonable costs incurred by Football Aid in connection with your proposed participation in the Football Aid Match and the identification by Football Aid of a suitable Reserve.

Please refer to our Terms and Conditions for full details.

What are the different ways I can Buy a Position?

Positions in Football Aid events can be purchased by Buy Now,Sponsored to Play and Bidding and are made available during two separate Auction Periods. In the first Auction Period, positions are available through our Buy Now and Sponsored to Play schemes only. In the second Auction Period, positions are available in our online bidding auction, with limited Buy Now availability.

Please see our Buying Guide for a more details about how to secure your position.

Can you Bid for (or buy fixed-price) positions in more than one Team or Club?

Yes, it is possible to Bid (or buy fixed-price positions) for more than one Team and there is no set limit to the number of Bids you can place. However, obviously you won't be able to play in more than one game on the same day!

What is the Closing Date for each Bidding Position?

Each Bidding position will have an individual closing date (and time) and these are displayed on the Event page on the website.

In order to check these details, go to the Event page and click on a position on the Team Map. The closing date, along with other availability details for that position, will then be displayed. You can also choose to show closing dates and current bidding information (where applicable) for all positions by choosing to display the Data View on the Event page.

For more details on Bidding, please visit our Buying Guide. 

If I have mistakenly placed a Bid, can I remove it?

Please note that once a Bid has been placed we will expect you to honour it. Therefore, think carefully before placing a Bid and be aware that if you are the successful bidder on the close of bidding, you will be liable for the amount you have Bid for that position.

If however, you have made a genuine mistake and have placed a Bid for the wrong Club or position, you can remove it by using the "delete" option in the My Bids section of the website. However, you are not permitted to remove a bid within 2 days of a position's closing date. If you wish to remove a Bid within 2 days of a closing date please Contact Us and we can advise further.

How will I know if I've won a position I've Bid on?

If you're successful in Bidding for a position, details of your winning bid should immediately appear in your My Bids page (and you'll also be sent a confirmation e-mail shortly after bidding closes).

How can I pay for my successful Bid, Buy Now or Sponsored To Play purchase?

Paying for a Bidding position: If you're successful in Bidding for a position, details of your winning bid should immediately appear in your My Bids section (and you'll also be sent a confirmation e-mail shortly after bidding closes). Payment can then be made by choosing the Make Payment option and following the on-screen instructions. Failure to make payment within the allotted time (normally 4 days after you have won the auction) will result in your position being re-opened for bidding or being allocated to another player.

Paying for a Fixed Price - Buy Now or Sponsored To Play position: When purchasing your Buy Now or Sponsored To Play position, simply follow the on-screen instructions after selecting the position to make your payment online. Buy Now positions have to be paid in full, while Sponsored To Play positions can be secured by making a deposit payment only, with the remaining balance required to be paid by a set deadline date.

Please Note:

- All online payments are made through the online payment provider WorldPay, ensuring your transaction will be carried out over a secure payment link. We accept online payment from Visa, Visa Debit, MasterCard, or Maestro (formerly Switch) cards. Note: WorldPay will apply the MasterCard SecureCode and Verified-by-Visa security system to payments they process on Football Aid's behalf. These schemes enable cardholder's identity to be authenticated through entry of a secret password - very much like the PIN number used in face-to-face payments.

- An admin fee of £10 will be added to the Bidding, Buy Now or Sponsored to Play price to cover shirt printing. This fee is compulsory and will be added to the total amount due before you make payment online.

For more details about paying for positions please visit our Buying Guide.

What happens if I don't raise the remaining balance for my "Sponsored To Play" position?

The conditions of the Sponsored to Play scheme are made clear in your Sponsored To Play Pack (which will be posted to you when you have paid your Sponsorship deposit). These conditions make it clear that if you fail to raise the minimum amount of Sponsorship and pay the remaining balance before the deadline date, you will forfeit your position. In addition, you'll need to provide evidence that you have returned any funds that you have already collected to any individual Sponsors.

Full details can be found in our Buying Guide.

What happens after I have secured a Position?

Firstly, an email will be sent to confirm details of your purchase. Then, a Players Pack will be posted to you, covering all aspects of the Football Aid event ensuring you are fully prepared for the big day. 

We'll send e-mail updates (and post information on the Event page) in the run up to the Event to keep you informed of any important information. This information is sent to the e-mail address you register with, so it is your responsibility to ensure that your registered e-mail account is set up so that e-mails we send to you are not treated as Junk Mail and deleted before you have the opportunity to read them. Football Aid cannot accept responsibility for any e-mails that we send to you, that you subsequently fail to receive.

For further details on what to expect in the run up to the event; from how to guarantee you have your fans cheering you on from the stands, to netting the Captain’s Armband for the match, please visit our Prepare for the Game page.

Match Day

What Strips will we be wearing on the day? How will you know my size?

It is Football Aid's intention to provide you with a personalised official Club (or International Team) strip for the match day. The Home team will be wearing the Club's Home strip and the Away team wears one of the Club's Away strips. If due to unforeseen circumstances, official strips are unavailable, Football Aid reserves the right to supply an alternative kit of it's choosing.

To ensure Football Aid are able to secure the large quantities of strips required for our match days, we must bulk order strips well in advance from the suppliers. We have to do this well before the identity of our players is known, therefore we must order a single size only that will be suitable for the majority of our players and this size is usually Extra Large (XL).

Please Note: We are unable to exchange these XL strips for alternative sizes, however it might be possible for you to purchase your own different sized shirt and send it to us, so we can personalise it and bring it along to the game for you to wear instead. If you'd like to discuss this option further then please e-mail us at info@footballaid.com or tel +44 (0)131 220 5999.

What if I want to wear my own Strip?

In order to create a unified team appearance and retain the authenticity of the match, we would ask everyone to wear the strip provided by Football Aid.

How do I order Tickets for friends and family who want to watch the Match?

In most cases, if participants want to bring Spectators/Guests, they will have the opportunity to purchase Guest Passes for them.

The number of Spectators/Guests allowed to attend on the day is ultimately decided by the Club and numbers are often limited. This is because of factors such as the size of the hospitality area made available to Football Aid and the number of stewards and other staff the Club can provide on the day. Spectators/Guests will not be admitted to the stadium without tickets.

Full details on how to order these tickets will be included in your Player's Pack and details of numbers available will be displayed on your specific Event page. Please Note: We strongly recommend that tickets are ordered at least 2 weeks in advance of the match to guarantee you receive your tickets on time.

Extra information can also be seen in our Prepare For The Game section. 

Will there be Photographs and a DVD of the Match available?

Photography - Wherever possible, official Match photographs will be made available to be purchased on the day of the Match and they will also be available from the photographers website. If a photographer is not available, Football Aid will provide alternative arrangements and photographs will be made available at a later date. 

DVD/Filming - Wherever possible, the Match will be recorded to produce an official Matchday DVD. This will be available to order on the day and we'll also include an order form in your Player's Pack. Please Note: although the vast majority of our games are covered, due to potential timetable restrictions we can't guarantee that every match will be filmed. If a game is not due to be filmed, guests and players are welcome to make their own filming arrangements, with guests permitted to bring a handheld video camera to record the event from their seating area. 

We'll send a Final Details e-mail to all players confirming photography and filming arrangements a few weeks before the Match.

DVD ORDER DETAILS
If you'd like to order a DVD of your game please contact – Chillpics' Shane Wilkinson, Freelance Cameraman & Photographer on Web: www.chillpics.co.uk Tel: 07901 590723 E-mail: swchillpics@gmail.com 
 
PHOTOGRAPH ORDER DETAILS
Photographs from our games are available from Matt Nuttall Photography and can be purchased online at www.footballaidphotos.com. You can contact Matt on Tel: 01204 598272 or 07793 818021 or E-mail: info@mattnuttallphotography.co.uk

Is there a Man of the Match award? If so who decides it?

Yes. This award will be decided by the Managers or Playing Legends on the day. The Man of the Match for each team will normally be presented with a match-ball, signed by the Legends and Managers where possible.

What if I'm injured during the Match?

First Aid professionals will be in attendance at all matches. You will be treated immediately and substituted from the bench if necessary. All aspects of participation in a Football Aid match is entered into entirely at the participant's own risk. Therefore all players are advised to consider making their own arrangements for insurance cover.

Will the FA (or SFA) disciplinary rules apply during the matches?

We would hope that everyone would enter into the spirit of the game. However, should disciplinary measures be required the referee's decision is final.

Full details about what to expect on the day of the match will be available in the Player's Pack which will be posted to all confirmed participants.

Who will I be playing against on the day? Will I be playing with Club Legends?

The two teams playing the actual match will mostly consist of members of the general public, however (subject to availability) each team will feature an ex-player who will act as the Playing Legend or Manager.

The Home team will wear the Club's official Home strip and the Away team wears the Club's official Away strip (subject to availability of official strips).

Please note although we will do everything we can to secure ex-players for your match, we can't guarantee they will feature for each of our teams. Football Aid accepts no responsibility for the non-appearance of these Legends and Managers whether advertised or not.

Do we have to pay extra for our Strips? Do we get to keep them?

There is no extra charge for your playing kit, it is fully provided by Football Aid and will be prepared for you and hanging up in the dressing room on match day.

However an admin fee of £15 will be added to the Bidding, Buy Now or Sponsored to Play price to cover shirt printing. This fee is compulsory and will be added to the total amount due before you make payment online.

After the game you will get to keep your full playing kit as a lasting memento of the day. You may wish to get it signed by the Legends/Managers on the day and even get it framed.

Please note that participants are asked to provide their own football boots and shin-pads.