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Primary Schools' Section


Minutes  of Meeting.

Time and Date:    Wednesday 6th July 2017.

Venue: Liverpool County FA

In attendance:

Paul O’Brien (Huyton), Keith Cahillane (Acting Primary Secretary), Bob Downing (MCSFA), Ken Davies (MCSFA), Matt Tuffs, Jennie Tuffs (West Lancs), Nic Corless (Primary Rep MCSFA), Danny Hart, Josh Hart, Mark Stalker (Wirral), Joe Ryan (MCSFA/Liverpool County FA)

  1. 1.             BD chaired the meeting.

1.1    BD welcomed everyone and the members all introduced themselves. Joe Ryan was formally introduced to the members present. Joe explained that he can help with funding, questions about schools football, he helps update the website for the MCSFA and KD pointed out that Joe can importantly verify documents for DBS checks.

  1. 2.              Apologies were received from Kirkby, Liverpool and Bootle, Anna Farrell, Steve Swinnerton, Karl Lysaght and John Rourke.
  2. Minutes were shared
  3. 4.              There were no matters arising
  4. 5.               AOB matters to be discussed

5.1            7 -a -side, and mixed teams

  1. 6.               Season Report

6.1                Individual schools comps. Nick Corless reported that entries were at the highest for many years. In the Merseyside Finals, nine of the ten boroughs were represented in the boys and in the Liverpool Cup, 8 boroughs were represented. Girls' entries were lower and this was despite earnest attempts to ensure teams were able to access the tournament. The Girls'  Merseyside round saw three teams withdraw on the day of the Finals. This needs to be  monitored and addressed if possible. St. Jeromes (Formby) won the Merseyside Boys. Birkenhead School (Wirral) won the Liverpool Cup finals. Malvern (Huyton) won both girls comps. Nick reported that the Echo Shield had run well again but that fixtures were often left unplayed. KC thanked NC for all his hard work.

6.2 The League was won by Liverpool, and congratulations were acknowledged to Liverpool PSFA in their absence, but yet again fixtures were not completed. KC also said that results simply didnt arrive on the day and he hadn't the time to chase up. POB suggested setting up a WhatsApp group for sharing all results. This was agreed as a good idea. KC asked if it would be better for one of the managers to collect results and compile a weekly league table. It was suggested that Paul Gow (Liverpool) might be a good person to do this. The future of the league and format was discussed. It was agreed that to enable completion of the league  that this season we trial playing each other once with the aim to complete all by Christmas. January then would be a period for completing unfulfilled fixtures and where teams could arrange friendlies. The Cup comps would progress from late January and be completed by early March. If fixtures had progressed really well an extra competition could be considered for the remaining weeks in February and March. This would need to be decided upon nearer to Christmas when a clearer picture of fixture completion was available. 

6.3 Taking into consideration that two extra teams competed on the night, bringing the total to 4 boys teams and 4 girls teams, in general the evening ran very well. There were some issues. KC explained that any rules in place were at the request of Everton FC. He explained that Everton FC are happy for us to run the evening as we see fit but that certain requirements are expected to be fulfilled. One was the managers on the pitch. Although managers might feel this is a small point, it is one of the few requests made by the club to protect that piece of grass from footfall, when the technical areas are available. A suggestion was made to put down protective matting for the managers to walk on. This was noted and will be discussed with Everton. MCSFA officers are well aware that we only have this great opportunity to host our finals here with Everton's kind support. The sister competition at Anfield is now hosted at the Liverpool Academy, and although we hope to return to Anfield, nothing is certain in this current footballing world.

KC also addressed in the same discussion, the very late arrival of the Wirral team, for the second year running, their response to MCSFA, referees, and Everton Club officials  upon their late arrival and the request to run a reduced warm up period. This led to consequent bad feelings which spilled over into comments from both sides. Upon Wirral explaining some comments directed at them from referees and officials it was accepted that better communication could have averted some of the issues. KC did reiterate that the late arrival was the cause of this. Wirral explained that they had left in plenty of time, and that traffic was excessive.

KC said that handing out Pennants for all teams hadn't really worked, as some teams weren't represented on the night. He asked if teams would rather be presented with Pennants on their first qualifying knock-out  game. All agreed this would be an idea worth trying. 

6.4    The 1966 Memorial Trophy- both girls and boys tournaments were a success and it was decided to repeat them this year. Thanks was given to the Wirral who helped facilitate the tournament and they agreed to host it again this year.

  1. MCSFA Matters:     KD discussed affiliation fees.
  2. ESFA Matters:      CWO needs to be in place for Rep team to run. This has to be complied with and teams that don't will be suspended.

It was agreed that our meetings need to be more representative og girls and  

  1. Election of Officers

KC was reappointed Primary Secretary. NC agreed to continue his role in which he proves to excel in his effort and results. All present were asked to think about taking on roles, if they weren't able to commit to being a full member of the MCSFA council or a Primary Rep.

  1. AOB

The question of girls playing in boys teams was raised. This was answered by several members who confirmed that girls can play in any U11 boys competition, but not vice-versa.

KC was asked to invite Lancashire teams into the 7 a side 1966 comp again, and also gauge interest in entering the league.


The meeting was closed at 6.45pm. 



  1. Report on current season

1.1       Danone 7 a side comp- KC reported comp ran smoothly and thanked all that took part. PG mentioned pitch size at northern finals and national finals, and KC agreed to reqest wider pitch markings at this years comp.

1.2       NC reported on individual schools cup. Gave results of national schools comps and Liverpool cup finals – Merseyside section. Liverpool didn’t have a school in the national 7s and Wirral didn’t enter the Liverpool Cup Finals.

AS mentioned the quality of the astro. KC mentioned a possible new venue at Rainhill HS for the individual schools comps. NC was thanked for his hard work running the competition.

1.3       League ran well. Liverpool won the league. AS asked how it was run. Mostly Sat mornings.  Home and away fixtures were played and small number of teams made communication easier when secretary stepped down half way through the season.

1.4       Everton Cup- KD said that a mid season date (April) was not common and thanked Everton for their support. The facilities were not quite up to scratch (pitch and floodlights etc…). Thanks were given to Alan Bowen for his support as stadium manager and his staff at the ground. POB mentioned quick turnaround and credit to all teams for their support in ensuring finalists were sorted before the date.

1.5       The Liverpool Cup comp ran well and was held at the Academy due to building work at Liverpool FC and was again a well run competition. KD had spare programmes for anyone interested. All results were reported. 

  1. ESFA matters-

5.1 Affiliation- KD reported that affiliation will not be accepted if the staff in charge of rep team have not got the correct accreditation such as FA CRB, and non-teachers to be registered as an AOTT with ESFA. September 1st is a government directive and is legally binding for associations to be properly accredited. Affiliation Fees are going up. Primary Assoc are £60. All through associations are £100

Merseyside Fees are £30 primary and £50 for all through assocs.   

5.2  KD then reported on David Ebberson and his role as Primary Football and Premier League link at the ESFA. AR spoke about being careful in getting involved in comps at Liv FC and Ever FC due to them taking players. KC asked who had received the grant- St Helens, Kirkby, Huyton applied but were unsuccessful, Liverpool no , Wirral no, KC advertised that monies were available and would recommend new teams accessing that funding. KC to add David Ebberson e mail to these minutes. so any new teams can e mail David to enquire about potential funding.

KC talked about lack of contact from prem clubs who are meant to be supporting us. KD mentioned several meetings where a complete lack of understanding of schools rep football was evident. POB urged teams to ensure that all safeguarding was up to date as applications for funding was turned down due to lack of properly accreditated personnel.  GB talked of a positive relationship with Liverpool.

5.3 Mandatory formats for competitions this season. KD reported on changes. KC said that in essence it wouldn’t change our competitions too much. KC agreed to block out two sets of fixtures for 

  1. MCSFA matters- safeguarding discussed again. KC mentioned format of Everton Cup and how we can keep more teams involved in our leagues and comps using the Everton Cup and maybe give the girls comp more parity at the finals. KD reiterated that all girls teams needed staff to be accredidated. AR asked if girls teams should be in attendance at this meeting. KC agreed to invite them for future meetings.
  2. New teams- AS asked about commitment to run teams. PH talked about running other teams and it did take time. POB said it needed more than one person to make it manageable. KC welcomed West Lancs and St Helens into the fold and all were happy for them to join.
  3. Organisation for new season- KC agreed to set fixtures for approval by all.
  4. AOB –

6.1       POB asked about regulations regarding eligible players. KC said you could only trial and play boys from schools in your areas.

6.2       AR spoke about protocol regarding assistant referees. He felt he was necessary to have a member of staff from one of the teams running the line. A lengthy discussion ensued and it was agreed that best practice would be to have a member of staff running the line but in any situation where this was not possible that the two teams speak to each other and agree with the referee who shall act as assistant referee.

6.3       Line markings. Extra boundary. AR said that in some matches parents were not kept away from the pitch. KC recommended that we agree a rule change, in line with FA guidance to 9 v 9 soccer, that one side of the pitch, where parents from both teams would stand, should be cordoned off by an appropriate barrier, that falls within FA regulations. This should be a minimum of 1m away from the touchline and should run for the entire length of one side of the pitch, or as far as possible. Proposed by KC and seconded by AR. All were in agreement with this. 

6.4       7-a-side rotation of pitches. Wirral had submitted a proposal to rotate the venue for the 7 a side. All agreed that they didn’t mind where the venue was but that it should be grass, and good facilities. KC mentioned that this could put additional burden on associations and should only be undertaken by those who wanted to do so. KD said that we should encourage those who wanted to take responsibility for different events. It was agreed by all there that this year would remain at the Liverpool County FA pitches and that any association willing to host the competition should submit full plans to the APM next year, and this would be looked at by the members present. It was reiterated that this tournament was not a Liverpool Schools tournament, but an MCSFA tournament. That wider pitches would be sought, and that referees would be sourced who were not regular referees for schools matches.

6.5       A final note of thanks was given to KD for his enormous commitment to schools football in Merseyside, to BD for his support and for chairing the meeting and to NC for his role and hard work as a primary rep liaising with the primary schools.


The meeting closed at 7.01pm.


Keith Cahillane

Primary Secretary.