The ESFA will begin their search for this season’s most talented Schools’ Footballers, with a view to presenting them with the opportunity to earn honours caps by representing their country in the 2019-2020 Schools’ Football season.
U15 Girls’ regional trials will commence next weekend (Sunday 13 October) searching for talented players from across the whole of England, with events taking place in the North, Midlands, South East and South West. Trialists for the boys’ squad won’t be far behind, with their initial regional trial opportunities commencing on the 19 October in the North and 20 October in the Midlands, followed by 27 October in the South East and 3 November in the South West.
These trials will present an opportunity for nominated players to impress selectors before heading to the next stage of the process. Simply by being nominated to take part in regional trials, players have already achieved the honour of being recognised by their county, having been put forward for the opportunity to play internationally by proving their capability of playing both individually and as part of a team.
The international squads are made up of the best players in Schools’ Football in England. Players are chosen based upon their talent, after making their way through a strict nomination process. Those who are successful in completing the entire trials process will go on to represent their country in 2020. Once selected, this season’s U18 England Schoolboys squad, following some friendly matches, will go on to play in the Centenary Shield against Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland and similarly, the U15 England schoolgirls will take part in the Bob Docherty tournament, which last year was held in Salou, Spain.
Since 1904 English Schools’ Football Association has been the governing body for schools football across England and has run International squads since 1907. The Association boasts crowds of 95,000 spectators at Wembley on multiple occasions at the height of the U15 international representative boys’ team. The ESFA are proud of their remit as an educational organisation, to be able to reward individuals, particularly at U18 level, who choose to remain in mainstream education as opposed to opting to join the academy system. There are deeply rooted values in education for ESFA and this is a way to celebrate players who have chosen to build a secure foundation for themselves with qualifications, wherever their football careers may take them.
You will be able to follow this year’s International Schools’ Football action via the ESFA’s social media channels as we follow trialists on their journey from nomination to selection. We wish all those nominated the very best of luck and are very much looking forward to welcoming two new squads into the ESFA honours list for 2019-20.