Football NSW has announced, in extensive consultation with League One Women’s clubs and in recognition of the strong consensus amongst those clubs, an update on changes to Age Grades for the 2022 League One Women’s season.
Following a recent Football NSW Board Meeting, an agreement was reached to move from having an Under 18’s age grade with a maximum of 3 over-age players (up to age 23) to having an Under 20’s age grade with a maximum of 3 over-age outfield players (no age restriction), and 1 over-age Goalkeeper (no age restriction).
The two relevant competitions will therefore be structured as follows:
- Football NSW League One Women’s (1st Grade and Under 20’s)
- Football NSW Girls’ Youth League Two (Under 14’s, Under 15’s, Under 16’s)
The change in age grade will assist in retaining players aged 18-20 that need more development time prior to being ready for 1st Grade, decreases the probability that players aged 18-20 will be lost to club and recognises that while the jump from Under 16’s to Under 20’s is significant, is not as significant as the jump from Under 18’s to 1st Grade.
Football NSW’s intention remains to expand its Women’s competitions until the optimal competition structure of 16 clubs in each of the NPL Women’s and League One Women’s is achieved along with implementing consistency in age grades across both competitions which will further grow the talented player and coach pathway opportunities in women’s football.