YOUTH LEAGUE OVERVIEW
The NSW National Premier Leagues (NPL) Youth Competition is the official Football NSW (FNSW) development league for players aged U13 to U18. It was established to underpin the FNSW NPL senior leagues and provide talented young players with links to further development opportunities.
During the early part of 2021, extensive consultation has take place with the broad football community, including one-on-one meetings with clubs and the relevant Standing Committees, several group forums and with Football Australia. Opinions were diverse and feelings were strong, and Football NSW was faced with making a difficult decision that not all stakeholders will ultimately agree with.
Cognisant of the strong, and often differing views around what is the best structure and framework for Youth Development, Football NSW felt it important to support the preference of the majority NPL clubs, and their respective Standing Committees, for a tiered model.
The model adopted supports one of the key recommendations that emerged from Football Australia's (FA) Performance Gap analysis, namely the desire to provide a minimum of thirty matches per season, and supports Principle V of Football Australia's XI Principles, namely to increase the number of match minutes played by the state's talented young players.
FNSW NPL YOUTH VISION STATEMENT
FNSW will guide clubs on the best practise approach to providing talented Youth players an opportunity to experience and enhanced football environment, with more high-quality training and playing opportunities than is possible in community football. This will assist to prepare them for the technical, tactical, physical, psychological and social challenges of football in NSW and in national talented player programs and competitions.