Football

Football (Americans call it soccer) is possibly the world's most popular team sport. It's also Special Olympics' most popular sport. This page draws together football-related information for all of Special Olympics, including news, stories, calendar events and competition results.


300x200-Football

Get an overview of the sport of Special Olympics football.  View the Football Fact Sheet

Played in just about every country, the sport's success is due to the fact that it can be played by boys, girls, men and women of just about any physical build and ability. Football requires little in the way of specialized equipment and is organized using simple, intuitive rules. 

It's so fundamental to the future of Special Olympics' growth plans that it is the focus of our Global Football initiative.

Football is perfect for Special Olympics Unified Sports, in which people with and without intellectual disabilities play on the same teams. In 2010, Special Olympics held its Unity Cup in connection with the World Cup.

The coming years will see more exciting global and regional football events for Special Olympics.


Football Stories and News


mars 17, 2014 | Latin America: Mexico

Unified Team of Guanajuato

By Paola Martinelli

From a base of 26 players who are part of local Lions Club programs and San Francisco del Rincón a selection of 18 players 10 Football players and 8 Special athletes was formed to take part in the two football tournaments.View Story From a base of 26 players who are part of local Lions Club programs and San Francisco del Rincón a selection of 18 players 10 Football players and 8 Special athletes was formed to take part in the two football tournaments in Banchetto Football field 7 in the July-September and September-November 2013 period. The second half of the Special Olympics Unified Team was adjourned. With this type of equipment we athletes with intellectual disabilities and without intellectual disabilities live together, train and learn from each other. Thank you very much to British Council and Premier Skills that supported the training process, as well as support the Unified football project during 2012.

About Paola Martinelli:National Marketing and Communications Manager
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mars 18, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Croatia

Unified football teams come together in Croatia

By Franjo Horvat

Twelve Special Olympics Unified Sports teams competed in a 7-a-side football competition in Zapresic, Croatia on 12 November 2013.View Story Twelve Special Olympics Unified Sports teams competed in a 7-a-side football competition in Zapresic, Croatia on 12 November 2013. Partners were recruited from local high school Josip Jelacic. One of the teams was comprised of low-ability players. Several of the teams had female team members. The competition was organized by Special Club Luc in cooperation with Special Olympics Croatia. “Everyone had a great time at the competition. The teams were nicely balanced and all the participants had a lot of fun,” said Franjo Horvat, National Director, Special Olympics Croatia. Zeljko Kiseljak, who represented community sports associations and federations of Zagreb County and the community sport association of the town of Zapresic, was on hand to present trophies to the teams.

About Franjo Horvat:Franjo Horvat is National Director of Special Olympics Croatia
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mars 18, 2014 | Europe Eurasia: Spain

I'm a Unified Partner!!

By Esther Cuesta Andujar

My name is Esther Cuesta Andujar, I’m 31 years old, I work as a multisport activities coach and a Unified Sports partner.View Story My name is Esther Cuesta Andujar, I’m 31 years old, I work as a multisport activities coach. I studied Physical Education (“INEF”). I have been working as a multisport coach in Club for a long time, and I often collaborate with Special Olympics, helping them with the organization. I am a Unified Partner in Club Deportivo San Ginés (Level II), and this year we have been awarded a silver medal in the Unified Football-7 Competition.

About Esther Cuesta Andujar:Mi name is Esther Cuesta Andujar, i have been awarded a silver medal in the Unified Football-7 Competition this year.
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Football Events


Date

Event

Location

juillet 13, 2014

MLS Team Exchange

Coaches, athletes and Unified partners participating in high school Unified soccer will be eligible to participate on the Special Olympics Sounders teams that will be playing home and away against the Special Olympics Timbers and Special Olympics Rapids. Each exchange will include a competition, players clinic, team awareness activity and tickets to watch the MLS teams in action. This unique opportunity is supported by the MLS and its member clubs.
For more information
More Details
View More


Seattle, Washington
UNITED STATES

janvier 08, 2014

2014 Special Olympics East Asia Regional Senior Coach Training - Soccer

Special Olympics China will be hosting the 2014 Special Olympics East Asia Regional Senior Coach Training for soccer. Senior soccer coaches from across 6 Programs in the East Asia region will be invited to part take in this important event.
For more information
View More


CHINA

mars 8 - juin 8 2014

Special Olympics Peru National Games

Join us August 3-6 in Lima, Peru as athletes and Unified partners from around the country will compete in football, basketball and volleyball to qualify for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, California. For more details, please refer to contact information below.
For more information
Ivan Huapaya
Email:deportes@olimpiadasespecialesperu.org
View More

Lima
PERU

août 18, 2014

Special Olympics Thailand National Games

Athletes across Thailand will gather in Korat to compete in the following eight sports: athletics, bocce (including Unified), basketball, badminton, cricket, football (Male & Female, Unified), swimming and table tennis (including Unified).
For more information
Rachaniwan Bulakul
Email:solympicsthai@gmail.com
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Pansa Stadium
Chalerm Phrakiat 80

Korat, Nakhon Ratchasima
THAILAND

août 21 - 28 2014

Special Olympics Mexico National Games

Join us for the biggest Special Olympics Mexico event in the country. More than 800 hundred athletes from around the country will compete for a chance to qualify for the 2015 World Games in Los Angeles. The Games will feature Unified Football which join people with and without intellectual disabilities on the same team to play together. With over 2,000 spectators and 270 volunteers, these National Games promise to be a huge celebration for all of our athletes.
For more information
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Vacational Center Oaxtepec
Mexico City, D.F., Morelos
MEXICO

août 24, 2014

MLS Team Exchange

Coaches, athletes and unified partners participating in high school unified soccer will be eligible to participate on the Special Olympics Sounders teams that will be playing home and away against the Special Olympics Timbers and Special Olympics Rapids. Each exchange will include a competition, players clinic, team awareness activity and tickets to watch the MLS teams in action. This unique opportunity is supported by the MLS and its member clubs.
For more information
More Details
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Portland, Oregon
UNITED STATES

août 25, 2014

El Salvador National Games

Join us August 25-30 in San Salvador, El Salvador as athletes and Unified partners from around the country will compete in football, open water swimming, aquatics and table tennis to qualify for the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles, California. For more details, please refer to contact information below.
For more information
Johamy Alabi
Email:jalabi@olimpiadasespecialeselsalvador.org
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San Salvador
EL SALVADOR

sept. 9 - 21 2014

2014 Special Olympics European/Eurasian Summer Games

In September 2014 more than 2,000 athletes from 58 countries will come to Antwerp, Belgium for the 2014 Special Olympics European/Eurasian Summer Games and enjoy 13 days full of joy and friendship. The athletes will compete in 10 sports and be invited to join 5 supporting programs.
For more information
More Details
Special Olympics European Games 2014
Email:info@so2014.com
Phone:+32 3 220 25 00
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Various locations, AntwerpAntwerp
BELGIUM

oct. 10 - déc. 10 2014

Special Olympics Bangladesh National Games

Special Olympics Bangladesh’s National Games will welcome an estimated 800 athletes and 100 Unified Sports® partners across Bangladesh. Ten sports will be played: athletics, badminton, basketball, bocce, cricket, football, handball, swimming, table tennis and volleyball. The three day event will be held across different venues: Bangabandhu National Stadium, Army Stadium, National Indoor Stadium & Swimming pool and the Bangladesh Sports Education Institute (BKSP).
For more information
Faruqul Islam
Email:sobangla@gmail.com
Phone:+880 1819 259844
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Bangabandhu National Stadium & other venuesDhaka
BANGLADESH

oct. 10 - nov. 10 2014

South Carolina Fall Games

Join us from October 10-11 at Pavilion Recreation Complex in Taylors, South Carolina as athletes from all over the state will be competing in Under 21 bocce, masters bowling, disc golf, flag football, volleyball, tennis, golf and soccer. Hope to see you there.
For more information
Kelly Garrick
Email:kgarrick@so-sc.org
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Pavilion Recreation Complex
400 Scottswood Road

Taylors, South Carolina
UNITED STATES

octobre 19, 2014

Unified Soccer Assessment Round - South Section

Join us on October 19th at Plymouth Street Fields in Mansfield, Massachusetts for an exciting day of Unified soccer. Registration opens at 8am with competition lasting from 10am-2pm. To play, coach or volunteer for this event, please refer to the contact information below.
For more information
More Details
Sam Baglioni
Email:sam.baglioni@specialolympicsma.org
Phone:508-821-3635
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Plymouth Street Fields
50 Plymouth Street

Mansfield, Massachusetts
UNITED STATES

octobre 20, 2014

2014 School Unified Soccer Tournament

Join us for the 2014 School Unified Soccer Tournament Monday, October 20th at West Rutland School in West Rutland, Vermont. This competition will include schools from throughout Vermont. Athletes and partners will compete in 5 per side team soccer or individual skills. For more details, please refer to the contact information below.
For more information
Chris Langevin
Email:clangevin@vtso.org
Phone:802-863-5222
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West Rutland School
713 Main St.

West Rutland, Vermont
UNITED STATES

octobre 20, 2014

School Unified Soccer Tournament

Join us for the 2014 School Unified Soccer Tournament on October 20th at West Rutland School in West Rutland, Vermont. This competition will include athletes and Unified partners from schools from throughout Vermont. This tournament will feature 5 a side football matches as well as an individual skills competition. Come and witness all the sports excitement.
For more information
More Details
Chris Langevin
Email:clangevin@vtso.org
Phone:802-863-5222
View More

West Rutland School
713 Main St

West Rutland, Vermont
UNITED STATES

octobre 20, 2014

Special Olympics National Games 2014 Melbourne

The 10th Special Olympics Australia National Games will involve more than 1,200 athletes of all levels competing in 16 Olympic and demonstration sports and events. These Games offer the opportunity for athletes to be selected to represent Australia at the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Los Angeles in 2015. For the majority of competitors, the National Games in Melbourne represents the culmination of four years of competing at local, regional and state level. Competing in the same world-class venues as their Olympic heroes, our Special Olympics athletes will perform in front of their proud parents, friends, supporters and the wider community. Athletes of all abilities will compete in 16 Olympic style sports including AFL and netball as demonstration sports across iconic sporting venues in Melbourne. Other special events include: Healthy Athletes Program, Young Athlete Program (2–7 year old), Athlete Leadership & Ambassador Program, Family Functions Social Outing, Law Enforcement Torch Run, Opening and Closing Ceremonies
For more information
More Details
Robyn Cooper
Email:robync@specialolympics.com.au
View More

Lakeside Stadium & various venuesMelbourne
AUSTRALIA

janv. 11 - mars 11 2014

Special Olympics Nippon National Summer Games Fukuoka 2014

Athletes from all over Japan will come to the city of Fukuoka for the 2014 Special Olympics Fukuoka Games to participate in 3 days of competition in 12 sports. Athletes will compete in aquatics, athletics, badminton, basketball, bowling, football, golf, gymnastics, table tennis, volleyball and equestrian.
For more information
More Details
Sayaka Sonobe
Email:tokyo_office@son.or.jp
View More

Multiple locations, Fukuoka
Fukuoka , Kyushu
JAPAN

févr. 11 - nov. 15 2014

Special Olympics Unified Football Cup

Modeled after the FIFA World Cup, the biggest single-event sporting competition in the world, the Special Olympics Unified Football Cup will bring together qualifying Unified Sports football (soccer) teams from 25 countries representing each of the Special Olympics seven regions to compete and showcase as never before, the bravery, ability and joy of Special Olympics athletes and Unified partners worldwide. Countries that rose to the top during qualifying events and are participating in the Unified Football Cup include: Ivory Coast, South Africa, Tanzania, Libya, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Thailand, China, Korea, France, Poland, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Saudi Arabia, Brazil, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Honduras, Jamaica and the United States of America.
For more information
View More

Various Venues
MALAYSIA

août 11 - sept. 11 2014

Virginia State Fall Championships

Fall Championships is one of Special Olympics Virginia's state level competitions, held at the end of the fall season in Virginia Beach. Approximately 1,000 Special Olympics athletes from across Virginia are selected to go for the gold in bowling, bocce, golf, volleyball, roller skating, and soccer competitions. Fall Championships also features a Saturday evening Opening Ceremony, where we light the Flame of Hope to "open" the Championships, followed by a Victory Dance - a favorite of both our athletes and volunteers!
For more information
More Details
Gray Miller
Email:gmiller@specialolympicsva.org
View More

Various Virginia Beach Venues
Virginia Beach, Virginia
UNITED STATES

déc. 14 - 15 2014

Southern California Fall Games

Be inspired by athletic determination and courage. Come cheer on more than 1,100 athletes from across Southern California as they compete for gold, silver, and bronze medals and ribbons at Fall Games. The Games will feature our six fall/winter sports — bowling, floor hockey, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball. Fall Games, one of our largest competitions, is the second of two Southern California competitions held every year.
For more information
More Details
View More

Fountain Valley and Irvine
Fountain Valley and Irvine, California
UNITED STATES

juil. 24 - févr. 8 2015

World Summer Games Los Angeles 2015

In July of 2015 more than 7,000 athletes from 170 countries will come to Los Angeles, California for the Special Olympics World Summer Games and enjoy 10 days full of joy, friendship and competition. Athletes will compete in 22 sports. The event expects to attract 500,000 spectators and 30,000 volunteers and 3,000 coaches.
For more information
More Details
World Summer Games Los Angeles 2015
Email:info@la2015.org
Phone:213-892-6018
View More

Various Locations, Los Angeles
Los Angeles , California
UNITED STATES

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Football/Soccer Competitions

Jeux canadiens d'été 2014

The Special Olympics Canada Summer Games, was the largest Canadian Games ever. Athletes competed in aquatics, athletics, basketball, bocce, bowling, football (soccer), golf, gymnastics, powerlifting and softball.


2013 Asia Pacific Games

Athletes from 30 Asia Pacific and East Asia regions compete in the inaugural Special Olympics 2013 Asia Pacific Games. Get schedules and results.


2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games

Athens, Greece, was the home of the 2011 Special Olympics World Summer Games. That year, it was the world’s largest sporting event for athletes with intellectual disabilities. See results by athlete, delegation and bib number.


How to Get Involved in Special Olympics

Special Olympics sports training, coaching and competitions go on in more than 170 countries around the world. You can get involved by getting in touch with the closest Special Olympics office.

Special Olympics near you»

Made Possible by The Annenberg Foundation

The Special Olympics movement is profoundly grateful for the support of the Annenberg Foundation which has underwritten the production of the coaches’ guides and resources, supporting our global goals for coaches’ excellence.

LEARN MORE»

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