Gibraltar Football Association
|UEFA affiliation||2012 (provisional)|
The Gibraltar Football Association (GFA) was formed as the Gibraltar Civilian Football Association in 1895, changing to its current name in later years. It is one of the oldest football associations in the world. As of October 2012, the GFA are provisional members of UEFA and the futsal team, under 19 and under 17 representative teams have been scheduled to participate in the 2013/14 UEFA season competitions.
The GFA was formed as an increasing number of football clubs were coming into existence in Gibraltar, and the association was designed to bring some form of organisation to the game there. Between the association's formation and 1907 the only football competition in Gibraltar was the Merchant's Cup. However, in 1907 the GFA established a league to complement the existing cup competition.
By 1901 the GFA had established a representative national team, competing against British military teams. This representative team continued to play down the years, their highlight probably being a draw against Real Madrid C.F. in 1949.
FIFA application 
The GFA affiliated with The Football Association in 1909, but is currently trying to become a full member of FIFA so that its national team is allowed to compete in more international competitions. This attempt was met with fierce opposition from the Royal Spanish Football Federation and has been unsuccessful to date.
The GFA's application for becoming a member of FIFA was filed in 1997. Two years later, FIFA confirmed the opening of the procedure and forwarded the GFA application to the appropriate continental confederation, UEFA, since according to FIFA statutes it is the responsibility of confederations to grant membership status to applicants. In 2000, a joint delegation of UEFA and FIFA conducted an inspection on the GFA's facilities and infrastructure. The Spanish Football Association strongly opposed to the GFA's application. However, in 2001, the UEFA changed its statutes so that only associations in a country "recognised by the United Nations as an independent State" could become members. On such grounds, UEFA denied the GFA's application.
Current FIFA and UEFA members include several federations which cannot be said to represent independent nations, such as the UK Home Nations (England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales), the Faroe Islands, Puerto Rico, Chinese Taipei, Tahiti and New Caledonia. French Guiana, Martinique, Guadeloupe and Saint Martin each have national teams which, despite not being FIFA members, are allowed to compete at the CONCACAF confederation level.
The GFA appealed to the world's highest sporting court, the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS), which in 2003 ruled that the GFA application should be handled according to the old statute. However, the UEFA continued to refuse accepting the GFA as member. In August 2006, the CAS ruled again that Gibraltar had to be allowed as a full UEFA and FIFA member, and on 8 December 2006, it was announced that Gibraltar had become a provisional member of UEFA.
However, full membership required a vote of the UEFA membership. Leading up to this vote, the Spanish Football Federation lobbied against Gibraltar's membership. The Federation's president Ángel María Villar attributed Spain's opposition to the Spanish claim over Gibraltar. He also claimed it was a political issue and referred to the Treaty of Utrecht of 1713. On 26 January 2007 in the UEFA Congress held in Düsseldorf (Germany), Gibraltar's application to become a full member of UEFA was rejected, with 45 votes against, 3 in favour (namely, England, Scotland and Wales), and 4 undecided.
In 2012, UEFA's Executive Committee admitted the GFA as a provisional member as of the 1 October, pending a vote at its Congress in May 2013 to make it a full member. This is the first step towards FIFA membership.
UEFA competition participation 
- Futsal team: 2014 UEFA Futsal Championship qualifying
- Under 17 national team: 2014 UEFA European Under-17 Football Championship qualifying round
- Under 19 national team: 2014 UEFA European Under-19 Football Championship qualification
See also 
- "Gibraltar close in on Uefa place". BBC. 8 December 2006]. Retrieved 22 September 2008. "And in 2000, the Spanish Football Federation said it radically opposed Gibraltar's membership of the organisation and would refuse to take part in any competition which involved the colony."
- El apoyo del Gobierno y de los partidos (Spanish)
- Arbitration CAS 2002/O/410 The Gibraltar Football Association (GFA)/Union des Associations Européennes de Football (UEFA), award of 7 October 2003
- Sparre, Kirsten (8 September 2006]). "Gibraltar to become member of UEFA despite Spanish resistance". playthegame.org. Retrieved 22 September 2008. "This happened after pressure from Spain which still claims sovereignty over Gibraltar after it was ceded to Britain under the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht. It refuses to recognise Gibraltar and there is an edict from the Consejo Superior de Deportes to all sports federations in Spain that they should block any membership application from organisations in Gibraltar."[dead link]
- "Gibraltar's bid fails 'through political pressure from Spain'". Panorama. 26 January 2007]. Retrieved 22 September 2008. "Villar said that "it is a political issue and since 1713 we have not found a political solution to this situation, because it is so difficult to resolve.""
- "UEFA admits Montenegro, rejects Gibraltar". Reuters. 27 January 2007.
- "Gibraltar national team made provisional member of Uefa". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-10-01.
- GFA Website
- Gibraltar's historic Four Nations Tournament campaign
- Website campaigning for GFA to become full UEFA and FIFA member
- Sportgibraltar with references to Herald Tribune etc.
- Sportgibraltar with references to Gibraltar Chronicle
- Spanish Football Federation interfering at UEFA
- BBC report on entry to UEFA
- BBC report on GFA's provisional status entry UEFA