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Team Talk

A personal project using football players and the charity Headspace I created a campaign that would be promoted across 5v5 centers in the UK that encouraged youngsters to speak about the importance of mental health, and addressing the stigma of talking about it from a young age

Where - Nineteen89Design

Creative Direction & Design - Ryan Gouge

Animation: Ryan Gouge

Football is a game that needs to be loud. It needs its voice. As we have all seen during lockdown, football without fans is not quite the same. Stadiums empty, pitches deserted and parks abandoned. Silent. Imagine football muted. No-one calling for the ball, shouting encouragement to a team mate or screaming with joy after a last minute winner. With mental health at an all time low, we need to use the energy on the pitch encourage youngsters to use their voice when they are low and speak about things sooner. Reach out to their team mates. 


Engaging young people about a sensitive topic is no easy task, but the power of football and influence of players gives a significant advantage. There are still however significant challenges to this:


How do we make it relatable and engaging for a

younger audience?


How do we speak their language? How do we encourage them to talk?


How do we target females in this campaign and tackle the significant lack of young girls playing at 5 a side football centres? 


A logo that smiles back

The use of speech marks to create a fun and playful logo aims to appeal to a younger audience with the aim of feeling more upbeat. This is a logo that smiles back.


Creative Campaign Style


Inspired by 5 a side football pitches as well as the Headspace circle, we created a vibrant look and feel which was fun but calming in its nature. The OOH campaign features fill in the blank statements which would be an anonymous way of expressing your feelings. 


Example Content

Release: Players who dealt with release at academy level. 

Support: Players who overcame the ultimate adversity to succeed 

Chance: Focus on female players who have talked about having to play on all boy teams when younger 

Dream: Players who had to work more than others to achieve their dreams as a footballer. 

Setback: Players who overcame major injuries to return to the top level of football 

Content Series

The content series is told by professional players across social media about their struggles and how speaking out helped them over their biggest challenges. This series begins with focus around well known players who had difficulties at academy level using key words that can be linked back to dealing with mental health. The series could be extended beyond that to tell other challenging stories. This series aim is to highlight how they built a team of trusted people whether that’s coaches or family, this allowed them to delete negative thoughts to achieve their dreams. 

Headspace App

Utilising the Headspace app, create an area that promotes the content series. Make this free for under 16’s to access. We highlight several female players stories to appeal to young girls. 


Can I be on your team?

Encourage youngsters to build their team with people closest to them. Mum, Dad, Best friend, Coach, they all want to be on your team, will you let them? 

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