Manchester Veterans Football League

MCFA Welcomes Team Applications

Manchester County FA is delighted to announce the successful end of the Manchester Veterans Football League pilot, which launched in January 2015.

Oldham Veterans FC were eventual winners, boasting a 100% record during the season, which comprised of five other teams in Heyside, Springhead, Avro, Mighty Dragons and Chadderton Juniors.

Focusing around the flexibility of football, and balancing the lifestyles and commitments of the players, the Manchester Veterans Football League is an 11 v 11 format, where teams fixtures take place twice a month and at three different kick-off times of 11am, 1pm & 3pm.

In addition to this, there are no limits on the number of players a team can register, and it operates with a ‘Olympic Games’ style age ruling, where all registered players must be over 35. However, you may also include three who are younger. All fixtures are played at Failsworth Sports Campus, on the 3G pitch based at the school every Sunday.

There are no up-front fees to join the league, which looks to replicate the playing experience of a small-sided provider such as Powerleague. Teams simply turn up, pay their fee and go and play their fixture. The league is also administered on FA Full Time, (click HERE to find out more) and teams receive weekly reminders to send in their result via text, allowing the league table to be updated automatically. The cost per team for each fixture is just £60, which means if a full first-team XI and just one substitute turns up, each player will pay just £5 for an 80 minute match.

Taking the pilot forward

The Manchester Veterans Football League (MVFL) has been developed by Football Development Officer, Daniel Pilling, who spoke of his delight about the success of the pilot.

He said: "I am delighted to at the success of the Manchester Veterans Football League pilot, and huge congratulations to Oldham Veterans FC for being the first ever winners.

"We now intend on using this pilot as a platform to increase the number of teams in the Oldham Division of the MVFL to at least 10 in 2015/16, and look to develop other area based divisions across the county. We are now working with teams in the Salford and Trafford to replicate the MVFL, and we are aiming to develop six new teams to enter this pilot. I am hoping that by 2016/17, we will have 24 teams involved in the MVFL across two area based divisions.

“Despite only launching the Oldham Division in January, we have engaged with over 100 players, who otherwise would not be playing football. This highlights the clear necessity for flexible opportunities, and there is clearly a thirst for this across the county. We have developed a completely flexible league which I believe is part of a new strand of football which is readily available to those who struggle to fit into your typical 11 v 11 league system.”

"We will always try to adapt the grassroots offer in Manchester and as a team we strive to provide flexible football for everyone, whether it is 5 v 5, 7 v 7, 9 v 9, 11 v 11, midweek, weekend, recreational or any other format which meets the needs of those who want to play, but do not have an appropriate format to suit their needs.”

Currently there are 11 teams who have enquired to join the Oldham Division of the MVFL for the 15/16 season. This include the six teams from the pilot league, and also five new applicants in Failsworth Dynamos, Failsworth Villa, VASA Veterans, Rochdale Veterans FC and Oldham Unity FC.

Team applications are still being welcomed, with the Oldham Division expecting to begin at the beginning of September with a maximum of 12 teams. The proposed Salford/Trafford Division is still under construction, but more information will be released in the near future.

Further information

If you would like more information about the Manchester Veterans Football League, or would like to register a team for the Oldham Division at Failsworth Sports Campus, or would like to enquire about the new proposed league in Salford/Trafford, please contact Daniel on