I have always loved this sport. It has been a part of my life since before I can even remember. In England we have great pride in our national team, even though they have not won a World Cup in half a century.
Playing for Recreation
If you go to any park in the UK, you are more than likely to find at least a couple of people playing football together. It is an extremely popular form of recreation. Five-a-side is a standard variant on the classic game. It requires ten players, five on each team. Apart from the change in numbers the basic rules are the same.
The great thing about five-a-side football is that you do not need to organise a big meet up to play it. You can be more casual with the planning and if you do not have enough players you can improvise by changing the rules or even asking strangers to play.
Most towns in the UK will have their own local football team. They will compete with the teams from nearby communities. These matches do not get nearly the same amount of media attention as the big leagues. However, they will still usually be reported on by the town newspaper.
If you want to join a local team then the process tends to be straightforward. All you need to do is ask the head of the team. You will likely be accepted if you live nearby, have some skills at the game and the team itself has space.
When I first joined my local team, I was given a sub position. This meant that if one of the other players were unable to attend or became injured then I would be sent onto the pitch. Only when a new player has proved themselves will they be given a permanent position.