From education to employment

The Youth Development League

Developing passion for football, alongside a fulltime 16-19 education programme, sponsored by SCL Education Group.

The Youth Development League was founded by our Chairman, Steve Franks, in 2015. With over 25 years in the football industry as a non-league player and professional coach, Steve achieved a UEFA A License whilst in his role as SCL Education Group Co-Founder. He wanted to create a league that would provide a unique opportunity for young people aged 16-19 years old to develop their passion for football alongside a full-time education.

The Youth Development League is an FA sanctioned youth league and is made up of five divisions across the South and Midlands, including professional football foundations, non-league football clubs, and private football academies providing them with the opportunity to compete in weekly fixtures alongside their education programme.

The league provides its member clubs the opportunity to roll on, roll off substitutes, creating a unique developmental opportunity at all playing levels. With player development in mind, we encourage our member clubs with more than one team to dual register their players with another league, as this allows our member clubs to rotate their players from team to team without transfer.

As a league, we have created strong partnerships with SCL Education Group, MJM Sports, Kappa and Yesref who each add great value to the running of the league. Thanks to these partnerships, our member clubs have access to an exceptional education programme, fantastic awards and competitions such as our Respect and Fair Play Award, Challenge Cup and Champion of Champions Final along with easy access to qualified match officials.

Since our inaugural year, the league has grown rapidly and our plans don’t stop there, we are aiming for bigger and better things.

“We want to not only realise the football talent that is within these players and give them a chance to compete, but also nurture and develop young people within a focused league structure.”

Steve Franks, Chairman

SCL Education are experts in sports education, helping young people to unlock their potential and supporting them on their life journey. SCL have been doing this for over 20 years, and to them, success means more than gaining academic awards

Delivering a range of officially recognised qualifications for 16–19-year-olds at over 70 education centres nationwide, SCL Education is the home of sports education: each year nurturing, developing and educating more than 3,000 learners in real sports environments.

Being part of the Youth Development League is a great tool to enable clubs to progress players of all levels within their academy through competitive and structured football.

As the League continues to rapidly expand in order to achieve its aim of offering competitive football nationwide, there has never been a more exciting time to join.

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