Courtesy of England Futsal website
Since the turn-of-the-year when The FA announced that they were planning to restructure The FA National Futsal League for next season, all clubs within the League have had an air of uncertainty hanging over their future. Today The FA has announced which clubs have been selected in next season’s restructured League after a marathon of interviews, meetings and application forms over the past six months.
Next season will see Division 1 change from three regional leagues into two: North and South. This Division will be renamed the FA National Futsal Super League and will consist of eight clubs in both leagues. At the end of the season the top four clubs from both leagues will progress into the Grand Final Play-Offs which will consist of Quarter Finals, Semi Finals and the Grand Final itself to determine the National Champion and the club that will progress into Europe.
Underneath the Super League, Division 2 will remain unchanged in terms of its structure. There will still be three regional leagues (North, Midlands and South), although promotion to the Super League will look very different. The top two club’s from each of the three leagues will progress into North and South Promotional Play-Offs where they will be joined by the bottom team from each Super League. Four clubs will battle it out for the one promotional spot in each Super League.
These exciting changes to the FA National Futsal League will also be supported by the introduction of an FA National Futsal League Club Licensing system. In an attempt to continue to push up the standards and quality of the League, The FA have established a set of minimum requirements for both the Super League and Division 2 that clubs will have two seasons to achieve. The Club Licensing system looks at improving all aspects of running a National Futsal League club from the first team, club academy, coaching, marketing and promotion, commercial development amongst a range of other areas. The FA will support clubs in achieving the License, but any club that fails to make the grade by 2017 will suffer automatic relegation.
The big surprise in The FAs decision for next season’s Super League is London Baltic and University of York not being selected, with Enfield, London Kaunas and Derby also disappointed not to make the cut. Division 2 see’s five new clubs being selected to join the FA National Futsal League: Salisbury, Solihull, Liverpool, Cambridge Utd and Southampton. There will be clubs across the country that will be delighted with The FAs decision and there will be others sorely disappointed.