The KicKStart Youth Football League (renamed in season 2010/11 following sanctioning for the first time by the Nottinghamshire Football Association to provide 11 a side football), is organised by KicKStart Academy, which was originally set up under the ownership of Malc Jones and Elaine Pritchard. The League is governed in accordance with the Rules and Regulations of The Football Association by a Management Committee comprised of the Officers and at least four (4) other members who are elected annually at the Annual General Meeting.
KicKStart Academy was originally formed as a Coaching School back in 1988 operating at Quarrydale School, to provide 'Football Coaching in the Community', as a directive to Malc from the late, great, Brian Clough when he was working for him as a Youth Academy Coach at Nottingham Forest.
The KicKStart Youth Football League was formed in 2002 (first known as the McDonald’s Friendly Mini Soccer League, in recognition of McDonald’s sponsorship, but changed its name in 2004 to the KicKStart Sunday Mini Soccer League). It remains one of the fastest growing Soccer League’s in Nottinghamshire, having started with 6 teams (80 boys and girls) back then to currently 85 teams made up of 17 x Under 7's, 21 x Under 8's, 22 x Under 9's, 14 x Under 10's and 11 Under 11's.
The League is affiliated to the Nottinghamshire Football Association and currently holds one seat on the FA Council represented by the League Chairman and also representation from Elaine Pritchard who was made a Vice President at the 2018 County FA AGM.
The League is unique because of KicKStart Academy. All games are played on a central venue every week at one of the selected venues across Mansfield and Ashfield details of which can be found on our "Venues" page above. The idea was born out of many years of experience and involvement in both the professional game and in a voluntary capacity with local youth football.
It was recognised originally that because 14 players are allowed to register in the game of Mini Soccer but only 7 can play at any one time, there would be a lot of boys and girls not getting a fair chance to play the game, which became more and more apparent by the amount of children we witnessed standing on touchlines as substitutes. We had also experienced over the years that there is a lot of hard work and administration involved with running a team, so we wanted to tackle these issues to allow more young people to play football and give more adults the chance to become involved by minimising administration.
WHAT MAKES KICKSTART DIFFERENT?
All our venues have a Site Manager and Administrator available to support your needs all day. We encourage you to be pro-active and call upon this support whenever you feel it necessary. You're not alone playing in the KicKStart League. If you feel you need help on your touchline for any reason, you are encouraged to call at Football Reception and ask for assistance and/or advice, there and then, for anything you think may become cause for complaint later. It makes our life much easier too.
KicKStart Academy takes out all the hard work and provides you with:
◦A 5v5, 7v7 or 9v9 pitch
◦Goals, Nets and pre marked pitches
◦Pre-printed Team Sheets (complete with all your players names)
◦An FA qualified match official for every game
◦End of Season Memento for every player (presented by a Sports Personality)
There is no ringing round arranging your next game or trying to get a Referee, putting your nets up, taking your nets down, marking out your pitches or even sweeping out the changing rooms. We do all this for you.
You will be required to attend one League meeting and one Induction Meeting a year only, unless the need arises for a Special General Meeting.
You will not have to ring in your result or post off a match report. This is all dealt with on the day by KicKStart Academy staff.
PRESENTATION OF AWARDS
Every child playing receives a participation memento at the end of the Season. The winners of the competitive games receive a Team Trophy
and an individual memento in addition to their participation memento.
Winners and runners up in the Under 12's are presented with a Team Cup and an individual Trophy by a Sports Personality.
KicKStart Academy has developed the League greatly over the last 16 years as listed: -
Because of the increase in membership KicKStart has formed into a quality competition, allowing teams to compete for a League Championship Trophy and Four Seasons Knockout Cup in the Under 12's, the KSA Vase (for teams finishing in the bottom four of the table) in the Under 12's only and
also a Champions League, Premier League and Challenge League in the Under 12’s. The Four Seasons Knockout Cup finals and KSA Vase finals are usually played at one of the local professional football clubs including The One Call Stadium, home of Mansfield Town FC. and the Lido Ground home to Clipstone FC
Under 7's, 8's, 9's, 10's and 11's play in accordance with the New FA Strategy (see League Rules (governed by the Standard Code of Rules) and League Regulations under 'Documents and Links' on the menu).
◦The League was formed by KicKStart Academy and was known as the McDonalds Friendly Mini Soccer League (in recognition of McDonalds
two year sponsorship)
◦Originally sanctioned to provide Mini Soccer only for Under 7’s – Under 10’s.
◦Name changed to the KicKStart Sunday Mini Soccer League.
◦9 v 9 sanctioned for Under 11’s played on ¾ sized pitches with ¾ sized goals.
◦Small sided was also sanctioned for Under 12’s and 13’s on Astro Turf.
◦Elliot Mather Solicitors agreed to become the League’s Main Sponsor for three years.
◦The League secured the use of Field Mill for the Knockout Cup Finals.
◦LA Medica agreed to sponsor the Under 7’s.
◦The League secured the use of Pride Park for the Knockout Cup finals for the Under 9’s, 10’s and 11’s.
◦The KSA Vase was introduced for the Under 9’s and 10’s 2nd Division Teams only to allow more teams the chance to play in a cup final.
Finals played at Field Mill.
◦The League’s own independent website was formulated by HJS Software Solutions Ltd
◦Change of name to KicKStart Youth Football League.
◦Four Seasons Shopping Centre agreed to sponsor the League for two seasons.
◦Sanctioned to provide 11-a-side football and also expand to include the Under 12’s age group.
◦KSA Vase extended to Under 11’s
◦Four Seasons Knockout Cup and KSA Vase finals played at Pride Park, Derby County FC and Field Mill.
◦Achieved Charter Standard League Status (the first in Nottinghamshire).
◦Won an award from the Nottinghamshire FA for Charter Standard League of the Year
◦Sanctioned to provide 11-a-side football for up to Under 13’s with all restrictions removed allowing teams to apply from all areas within a
25 mile radius of Kirkby in Ashfield.
◦Sanctioned to develop a local Girls League.
◦Sanctioned to provide youth football up to Under 14's.
◦KicKStart goes 'Green'. League Handbooks and Directories were sent out electronically and displayed on the website in aid of the environment.
◦Sanctioned to provide youth football up to Under 15's.
◦Achieved a record number of teams applying and the provision of 9 v 9 for both Under 11's and 12's by popular demand.
◦Sanctioned to provide youth football up to Under 16's
◦Sanctioned to provide SATURDAY football in addition to Sunday as above; in the form of Mini Soccer 5 v 5 for the Under 7's and 8's only.
◦Sanctioned to provide SATURDAY football in addition to Sunday as above; in the form of Mini Soccer 7 v 7 for the Under 9's in addition to the above age groups.
◦All KicKStart Academy Staff hold an Enhanced CRB Disclosure approved by the FA Media Group, and the League Chairman, League Secretary and League Welfare Officer hold a Child Protection and Best Practice Certificate and Welfare Officer Workshop Certificate and have attended the Safeguarding Children and Welfare Officer workshops.
PROFILE OF THE LEAGUES CREATOR
The original Chairman and creator of the league, Malc Jones, first became involved in youth football back in 1975 when he joined Sutton Town FC to work with the under 16’s youth side at the same time as helping to coach the Sutton Primary School District Team.
In 1980 he became the Assistant Manager of Teversal Colts in partnership with the very well respected Sam Slack (a former League Secretary for the then Mansfield Youth League), before eventually taking over as Manager supported by Sam. Over the next three seasons, Teversal Colts won every honour possible playing in the Mansfield Youth League.
Malc started his professional career as a part timer (working 8 days a week!!) in 1984, by personal invitation of Brian Clough who invited him to the City Ground for a chat one day. He joined the City Ground Staff in October of that year, but continued to coach his Teversal boys until the end of the season.
In the first twelve months at the City Ground he attained his FA Coaching Badges achieving a UEFA B Licence, and was appointed by Mick Raynor at the beginning of the 1985/86 season as Youth Team Coach and Manager of the Centre of Excellence Under 12’s. During the next nine seasons he did a variety of coaching jobs with various age groups, and was recognised as a valid member of staff. Over that period he experienced the highs and lows of the Football Club, joining in with the celebrations, and the disappointment of relegation, followed by the retirement of the Gaffer.
During the glory years Malc coached many good players, including Jermaine Jenas (for two years), Michael Dawson, Andy Dawson, Andy Reid, Andy Cole, Shaun Wright-Phillips, Bradley Wright-Phillips, Mark Goodfellow, Marlon Harwood, Richard Cooper and lots more young men who went on to play semi-pro in local leagues. As well as this, he scouted many more including Kristian Commons and James Perch, taking them into the City Ground at Under 10's.
In 1995/96 he spent what he describes as a most enjoyable twelve months at Field Mill, working for the Manager at that time, Steve Parkin, who went on to manage Rochdale; Bob Shaw, the Chief Scout; and the Centre of Excellence Director, Dave Bentley.
At the end of that season he took early retirement from his ‘day job’ as an Economic Development Officer with Ashfield District Council and was approached by Coventry City to join them on a three year contract at the Club’s Academy to form Development Centre’s across the Country; thus allowing young footballers to gain professional coaching but remain with their Clubs; while presenting them with the opportunity to achieve Academy standard. This was all under the watchful eye of Club Manager Gordon Strachen. Over the next three years he got to know the M1 & M69 quite well as he journeyed those roads six days a week. At the end of his contract at Coventry City he moved to Leeds United to join up with his former boss at Nottingham Forest, Alan Hill and his good friend Mick Raynor. Within a matter of a few days of moving to Leeds United he was invited to join Leicester City as Development Centre Co-ordinator in the Youth Academy when Peter Taylor was Manager. The move to Leicester City proved to be his last in the professional game, as two and a half years into working at the Club, Leicester City went into voluntary administration, and most of the contracts of the staff working in the Youth Academy were terminated.
In 1998 during his involvement with Coventry, and while still coaching at Quarrydale he found himself working with a brilliant set of lads who wanted to form a team, so he along with help from Elaine Pritchard and Sam Slack formed the first Quarrydale team at Under 12's, and registered them in the Chad Mansfield Youth League for their first season as Quarrydale Colts FC. Over the years the boys won every honour they could possibly have achieved in the League same as Malc's Teversal team that preceded them, and they were also finalists in the Nottinghamshire Shield Challenge Trophy at Under 13's and Under 14's; finally hanging their boots up at Under 18's.
It was in 2002, during his break with professional football that Elaine convinced Malc to leave the pro game, develop the coaching school and focus on the local children wishing to play regular football. Hence the McDonald’s Friendly Mini Soccer League was founded.
Ten years on and he's back. In January 2012 Malc was asked by the Chairman of Notts FA to take over as Manager of the Under 18's Nottinghamshire FA Representative Squad and this season the team won their Division which is their highest achievement yet having finished as Runners Up in the Division last season. Congratulations and well done to all the players!!
On 8th June 2021 we heard the tragic news that the great man himself Malc Jones had sadly passed away peacefully in his sleep. Malc has left a legacy withing the local communities and especially within the grassroots football family. thousands of children were given the opportunity to play football in our area because of Malcs' vision and committment to childrens football. He will be sadly missed by many. In memory of Malc, from this season forward we will play an annual knock out competition for the prestigious MALC JONES CUP. We will remember him.