The Football South Development Leagues (FSDL) are the pinnacle youth leagues in our region and will be open to team’s federation wide. Because of our pool of players being quite small compared to other parts of the country, we have dual age banded these leagues at U15 (born 2007 & 2008) & U17 (born 2005 & 2006).

These leagues will also have certain criteria to meet to gain entry. These criteria will help ensure it is a high standard, player development focused competition that always puts the players first. 

Depending on entries, this league will involve travel to regions such as Invercargill, South Canterbury & Central Otago. We are currently working on a draft fixture list that we estimate will involve 5-10 travel games across the whole season (April – October)

Football South aim for all games to be governed by a neutrally appointed and qualified match official, across the best available venues.

Football South Academy:

In each league (U15 & U17) a squad will be selected and invited to a residential camp in Dunedin each school holidays during the season. That will be led by Football South Staff and other FSDL coaches. We hope that this will bridge the gap for players selected for the new “New Zealand Football Regional Training Centre” program, as this camp will expose them to a high-performance residential camp. Each school holiday may look different including trips to tournaments, other regions for games etc.

Criteria for entry:

To ensure this competition is the pinnacle youth space for players and is a development focussed environment, we have put criteria in place for entities to gain entry. Teams must meet a certain standard to be accepted into this league. Criteria can be found by clicking the link below.​​​​​​​

Costs of the league

Football South and our league partner, Amigos, have worked hard to ensure the costs to players are as low as possible, and that no player misses out due to financial hardship. We're proud that the per-player cost of $229 is much more cost effective than similar programmes throughout the rest of New Zealand. The clubs have been supportive by adding minimal cost on top of this per-player fee for coaching, kit, and equiptment expenses. 

The actual cost to run the league is around $500 per player, with the majority of this expense being for the equalised bus travel (80% of the total cost). The remaining cost is split between referees (where we are able to appoint them), ground fees, NZ Football Membership, and the centralised camps and ID. Football South have forgone all competition entry fees and membership fees to ensure the cost is as low as possible. 

In addition, through the amazing contributions of Amigos, TAB, and our own investment we have funded this league so that less than half of the actual cost is passed on to the players. 

We're hoping that this league is a success and we can continue to keep the costs accessible for the participants. 

Thank you to everyone who has made this new initiative possible. 

Youth football pathway