In 2007-08 British Colleges Sport, with financial support from
Association, established the England Colleges Football programme to
develop students who are combining full-time studies in further
education colleges with playing a high standard of football. The
programme runs alongside the 4-year football development strategy
for FE 2008-2012 which contributes to the FA National Game Strategy
Football is the most populated sport within further education sport
and the BCS representative programme has an extraordinary reach.
The regional team system has historically always been held in high
regard, and is followed closely by over two hundred member colleges
from seven English regions.
The national team programme has further raised the level of
football representation and significantly raised the aspirations of
those students and staff selected to take part.
Aims & objectives of programme
- To develop an effective
system to allow players in full-time further education to represent
- To identify players within
college football with outstanding ability and place them in an
environment designed to produce football and educational
- To develop an effective
system to identify coaches and workforce with high potential
working within the FE sector and develop, train and mentor
As part of the programme BCS run two sides (one male & one
female), with a pathway for players with disabilities also under
consideration. Players are selected from a structured trial system
that starts initially with phase one regional trials in October,
progressing through to a phase two competition in November and
through to a phase three national team selection camp in December
where a pool of twenty two players for each squad are
Once selected, players follow a similar programme to the England
national teams with structured meet-ups building up towards peak
performance in a tournament at the end of the season. Over the
course of the season the players will participate in a series of
training camps, including an international camp, together with
About the Women's Team
Selected players follow a programme similar to that of the FA's
England Youth national teams thanks to the close links established
between the two organisations.
The England Colleges Football women's team are highly rated in the
women's game, going undefeated in over a year. In the past season,
impressive victories were recorded over England Universities U-21's
and the Northern Ireland Under-19's international squad. The
women's England squad are also reigning champions of the
Anglo-Welsh Shield, defeating the Welsh women's side
comprehensively over two legs.
The national team is supported by an extensive network of
college-based staff, and in 2010-11 England Colleges Football
scouts will be appointed and deployed across all of the NCFL
divisions. Professional Club scouts, US University scouts and
England Women's scouts also regularly attend England College
Football fixtures, providing a great platform for players who
impress to progress further in football.
How the Trial System works
The trial system has slightly changed from last year with the Phase
3 trials being held on one day at Lilleshal for the Women's.
Wednesday October 6th
1 day trials held within the Region. A team of up to 16 players is
selected to represent the regional squad and will go forward to
1 day trials held within the Midlands North and South regions.
Regional squads play a series of games with players observed in
match play. 33 players are then selected to progress to Phase
The top 33 players are then invited to play in a series of games at
Lilleshal Sports Centre with the purpose of selecting the initial
squad of 22 for fixtures.
NCFL select team to attend National Team Camp before
A squad of up to 16 players scouted from their involvement in the
NCFL are selected to attend a National Team behind closed doors
training camp to play against the selected England squad.
Most players have been involved within a professional clubs'
academy or centre of excellence programme, before being released
and pursuing their education at college. Players that trial should
have played at a level equivalent of county representative,
academy/centre of excellence or non-league club level. In
order to be eligible all players, male and female, must be
full-time students within a BCS-affiliated Further Education
College and playing within the BCS football competitions.
Official England Colleges Football Partner
Pass4Soccer - The trusted organisation to provide student athletes
with professional advice and best practice in finding a US
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