Common Goal Passes 200 Members

Double century of players and managers have now taken the 1% pledge

After a little more than four years since launching, Common Goal has reached the milestone of 200 members.

A double-century of players and managers have now pledged a minimum of 1% of their annual salaries to drive social change through football.

That now means Common Goal now has a total of 205 player and manager members, honing from 48 different nationalities, and representing 60 different leagues, who are working side-by-side to tackle social issues: from advancing gender equality to driving jobs and growth to promoting greater peace, fighting racism, and social justice.

In a grand total of 353 members to have pledged, that number includes a number of clubs (4), football executives (16), media figures (8), club staff (58), retired players (10), businesses (21), and even a competition all playing their part.

The story began back in August 2017, as the narrative around football began to change, highlighted by Neymar’s transfer to Paris St-Germain for a world-record sum of £200 million.

The headline signalled a call to action: to pay it forward — to include the livelihoods of the very same fans who cultivated the culture of passion and prosperity for footballers worldwide.

It was at this point that Manchester United midfielder, Juan Mata, published a piece on The Player’s Tribune, recognising the disparities between football in the stadium and football in the communities around the world.

The game hadn’t changed, but the perceptions around it had. In his piece, he launched a rallying cry to show the world the power of his beloved sport, unveiling Common Goal.

Common Goal has gone on to become a bridge between the professional football industry and community organisations to connect and collaborate towards empowering disadvantaged young people and their communities through a combination of football and informal education.

Alongside the journey of accomplishing this mission, the embedded implications of Common Goal slowly surfaced: on the individual level, footballers could hold themselves accountable to being good footballers both on and off the field, emulating genuine sportsmanship.

Likewise, athletes augmented dimensions of themselves beyond their on-pitch performances but also seeing themselves as community builders, equity pioneers, and global citizens, being a part of something larger than themselves, their teams, or their countries.

Since 2017, funds raised have continued to grow with each year, proving that with a small commitment big changes can be made to the lives of young people around the world.

In that time €3,080,184 has been distributed to 58 community organisations, with eight collective projects being launched and a Covid-19 response fund.

There have been plenty of highlights throughout Common Goal’s four years (and counting) but this milestone represents more than a number of salaries combined; it signifies the growing narrative that football is, and should be, more than just a game.