FA licenses awarded for new Regional Talent Clubs

Friday 29 Apr 2016
The RTC announcement comes in FA Girls' Football Week

Licences have been awarded for newly-created Regional Talent Clubs (RTC) which will be responsible for the delivery of elite girls’ football development.

Following a six-month application process, 34 clubs and centres will deliver coaching and education to the best young female footballers in the country, on three-year licences.

The clubs have been grouped into three tiers, dependent on their facilities, workforce, coach and player development, performance service provision and the number of age groups they will work with. The clubs will also have FA funding aligned to their tier, which they are required to match fund a percentage of, and increased FA support.

RTCs have replaced the former Centre of Excellence model and will deliver enhanced coaching and support designed to improve the development of elite female players through the FA Girls’ England talent pathway.

As part of the changes, RTC age groups will run alongside the academic year, starting in September. For the first time, girls’ U10 and U12 teams will compete in Charter Standard youth leagues, to enable players to further develop both technically and physically. The older age groups will compete in FA organised fixture programmes against other RTCs.

The changes have been led by The FA’s Elite Performance Unit, which was set up in 2014 to manage the development of elite female footballers and coaches, to benefit the domestic and international game and support winning England teams.

Brent Hills, head of the Elite Performance Unit, said: “The introduction of Regional Talent Clubs will really enhance the development of the best young female talent in this country and ensure that clubs and centres are better supported in working with them.

“We’d like to congratulate all of the clubs that have been successful.  There were some excellent applications which bodes very well for the future of elite female football and the delivery of girls’ coaching.

“We understand that some players may be impacted geographically by these changes but we will work with them and their parents to find the right playing and development opportunities for them, as we want to keep the best female players in the game.

“Ultimately we are committed to growing the women’s game and developing winning England teams across all age groups and we are confident that these changes will help us deliver just that.”

Player trials for the RTCs will begin in June, with details on request at each individual club.  All players at RTCs will be eligible to be selected for England across all tiers.

Licences are awarded subject to Sport England and FA funding and continuing to meet licence criteria.

Tier 1 Licence:

  • Arsenal Ladies FC
  • Birmingham City Ladies FC
  • Blackburn Rovers Ladies
  • Brighton & Hove Albion
  • Leeds United
  • Leicester City
  • Liverpool Ladies FC
  • Manchester City Women
  • Manchester United
  • Oxford United FC
  • Southampton FC
  • Sunderland
  • York City FC Foundation

Tier 2 Licence:

  • Aston Villa
  • Bristol City Women’s FC
  • Chelsea
  • Derby County
  • Essex FA
  • Everton Ladies FC
  • Gillingham FC
  • Millwall Lionesses
  • MK Dons FC
  • Sheffield United
  • Stoke City
  • Teesside Sport

Tier 3:

  • Boston United
  • Charlton Athletic
  • Doncaster Rovers Belles
  • Durham Women FC
  • Nottingham Forest Ladies FC
  • Reading FC Women
  • Shrewsbury Town FC
  • Sporting Club Albion
  • Wolves

More than 2.89million girls and women play football in England. Please follow this link to find out more about where to play.

By FA Staff