Youth leagues are a great success
It may have more illustrious professional football neighbours in Bolton Wanderers FC at the Macron Stadium but the USN Bolton Arena has become home club to many young footballers.
More than 300, 13 to 18 year-old boys and girls play football at the Arena in its youth leagues every Friday for 51 weeks of the year. The leagues are affiliated to the Lancashire Football Association and matches take place outdoors on 3G between 5pm and 9pm.
The evening itself extends from the football with the majority of teams taking full advantage of the nearby Middlebrook Retail Park’s food outlets before or after their fixture time, the Vue cinema and Hollywood Bowl.
The professionally-organised youth leagues were formed in 2005 with just one league and now have five divisions, with the Premier Division U18s kicking off at 8.45pm, the Championship U17s at 8pm, League One U16s at 7.15pm, League Two U15s at 6.30pm, League Three U15s at 5.45pm and League Four U14s at 5pm.
For teams, matches cost £21 per week and friendly matches £17 and there are fixtures each Wednesday of half-term when there are also crossbar challenges and penalty shoot-outs.
Commented Football Manager, Marcus Brown: “What’s extremely pleasing is that we’re giving young people the opportunity of filling their Friday evening by doing something they clearly enjoy.”
* For more information on the youth leagues, contact Marcus Brown on 01204 488106 or email MarcusBrown@boltonarena.com