Introducing YesRef


LNFS England is pleased to introduce YesRef for real time payments to referees. Bringing together sports and technology, YesRef will ensure easy, real time payments for referees with LNFS England.

As part of the new partnership, YesRef will provide real time payments for all referees across the LNFS England divisions through their simple to use platform, increasing the visibility and speed in which referees get
paid their fees and expenses.

The easy-to-use YesRef app will show referees when they have been added to a game or event, as well as a live game status, showing whether the match fees have been paid or not, in one location and in real time.

As a value-added feature, LNFS England member clubs will also be able to request referees via the app for any games outside the league structure. This will reduce the total amount of referee related admin, giving more
time back to the sport we all love.

Ben Williamson, Chief Operations Officer, YesRef said “LNFS England are a forward-thinking organisation looking to make efficiencies in the way the league operates, whilst increasing visibility of payments to referees, who are at the heart of futsal. It is great to have LNFS England onboard and I look forward to a long and successful partnership”.

Sport England lists futsal courts collated by LNFS England

We are grateful to Sport England for working with us to add futsal courts to the list of facilities on their Active Places Power database.

This free to use database allows futsal clubs to search for futsal courts anywhere in England. New users just need to register here for free. You can then search for futsal courts by:

  • Hovering over Reports and clicking on Detailed Report: Facilities.
  • Selecting your geographical Area of Interest and Facility Type: Sports Hall.
  • Under More criteria scroll down to Futsal Courts and select >= and put 1 in the box below.
  • Click Submit and then choose table view or map view to see the results of your search.

LNFS England has provided Sport England with the locations of 65 futsal courts, as shown on this map:

Users can zoom in on particular areas and venue data are also available in tabular form.

We know that there may be many more facilities in England that are not yet listed on this Sport England database. We would therefore like all English futsal club officials to register as Active Places Power users to see if the venues they use or know about are on the database. If they are not, then please email details to the LNFS England Communications Director, Ewan Minter, and he will forward this information to Sport England. We are specifically looking for venues in which a futsal court is marked out (i.e. not venues that just allow futsal to be played on basketball or five-a-side courts).

By working together our community can help Sport England build up a comprehensive database of futsal-ready facilities to help clubs and leagues choose the best possible venues within a reasonable distance of every club.

LNFS England partnership with TeamFeePay

We’re excited that the new season is here and finally things seem to be looking up, with clubs back on the court to train and compete. 

LNFS England is also pleased to announce a partnership with TeamFeePay – a Sports Club Management System which will help to revolutionise how our clubs are administered and run. The system offers a range of benefits that can help clubs across our league: 

  • Cashless Automated Payments  
  • Quick & Easy Online Player Registration  
  • Club governance and acceptance 
  • Fundraising and Competitions  
  • Enhanced GDPR 
  • Covid Track & Trace Compliance  
  • Time Saved for Volunteers 

We’re all here for the same reason, which is to play the sport we love and save time for volunteers to focus on the things that matter most. TeamFeePay offers a host of benefits for club volunteers and members alike: 

  • No more paying fees at the sidelines with automated payment collection 
  • No more paper registration forms. Register once and then it’s an instant renewal. 
  • COVID Track & Trace functionality so you can ensure safety for all of our members. 
  • Peace of mind that player details are safe & secure. 
  • Instant access for coaches and volunteers to emergency contact details. 
  • Ability to engage in FUNdraising games to support the growth of your club. 

TeamFeePay’s system comes at no additional cost to clubs. There is no sign-up fee, no annual fee, and no monthly membership fee. 

Click on this link to book a free demo with one of TeamFeePay’s friendly advisors who will show you how their system can work for you and your club.

The first 15 clubs who book a demo through this link will receive a £100 sportswear voucher!* 

*Campaign offer: Book a demo with TeamFeePay in September 2021 to win a £100 sportswear voucher. This offer is only available to clubs new to TeamFeePay and only one voucher per club will be provided to each of the first 15 clubs who book a demo. Clubs must be looking for a software solution to help with their club management. This Promotion is only open to clubs with teams that play in LNFS England divisions in the 2021/22 season. To enter the promotion you must book a demo through the above link. This promotion is valid until the 30th of September 2021. Once the demo is complete, the club will receive their voucher. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google or Instagram. The voucher is non-refundable, transferable, or exchangeable and cannot be redeemed for any other form of compensation unless authorised by TeamFeePay. The voucher recipient must agree to participate in any promotional activities that may be organised by the Promoter in connection with the Promotion without any further consent or payment. If for any reason any aspect of this promotion is not capable of running as planned the Promoter may in its absolute discretion cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the promotion, or invalidate any affected entries. The Promoter of this promotion is TeamFeePay (Concept Apps Ltd), Unit 17, Innovation Centre, Queen’s Road, Belfast BT3 9DT. 

Continuing Professional Development for English-speaking futsal coaches

LNFS England and Profive Academy are pleased to announce a new partnership to deliver online futsal coach education, short expert talks, and interactive webinars to English-speaking futsal coaches worldwide at a specially discounted rate for LNFS England coaches.

  • Our goal at LNFS England is to help coaches improve their technical knowledge and understanding year-on-year so they can compete with the world’s best.
  • Futsal coaches deserve the best possible support to help them develop their players. The Profive Academy 40X20 Futsal Methodology is the most complete futsal training course available, accessible 24/7, 100% online, and updated monthly.
  • LNFS England coaches can register for a specially discounted exclusive price of 175€/year (reduced from the usual price of 250€/year).

This coach education complements and expands on any formal futsal coaching qualifications offered by futsal National Governing Bodies.

Coaches are awarded a certificate of completion after each course module.

Be the best coach you can be!

For further information click here

A futsal venue benchmark: The Olivo Arena, Jaén, Spain

Futsal in the Olivo Arena

As part of her visit to Spain, LNFS England Chair Albania Grosso stopped off at the new Olivo Arena in Jaén, Andalusia, Spain, which officially opened last month with a futsal match between Jaén and Mengíbar. Why “Olive” Arena? If you’ve ever been to this part of Andalusia, the capital of Spanish olive-growing, you’ll understand why!

Albania in front of the Olivo Arena

Costing over 22 million Euros to build and funded jointly by the Jaén provincial council and the Andalusian Tourism & Sports Ministry, it has been described as a modern “benchmark” sports palace by Francisco Reyes, president of the Jaén provincial council.

The venue can host futsal, basketball, handball, and tennis, as well as exhibitions and concerts, and it seats over 6500 spectators. LNFS President Javier Lozano was instrumental in helping to win funding for this prestigious new facility.

Javier Lozano with Jaén colleagues at the Olivo Arena

Albania says: “I was so impressed by this beautiful new addition to the over 60 existing arenas in Spain. There are four times more indoor arenas in Spain than in England, even though Spain has a population of 47 million and England a larger population of 56 million. However, it’s not just the low number of arenas in England that’s a problem for indoor sports like futsal – it’s also their prohibitive cost. For example, use of the Copperbox in London for a day costs from £25000. The cost of using the Olivo Arena is much less because facilities such as this in Spain are seen as a public good, funded by the taxpayer for the benefit of the local community.”

The Olivo Arena at night

Albania added: “We’re obviously a long way behind Spain when it comes to both the supply and the cost of venues suitable for futsal. However, we shouldn’t be discouraged by this. We need to start from a realistic understanding of where we currently are with futsal in England. Our teams are currently amateur and they play their matches in municipal leisure centres or university sports halls, most of which have a spectator capacity measured in hundreds and not thousands, and few of which have a court of international size. However, if the futsal community works together then we can build capacity sustainably year on year. If Spain can do it then so can we!”

LNFS and LNFS England discuss joint plans

Javier Lozano (LNFS President) and Albania Grosso (LNFS England Chair) at LNFS headquarters, Madrid on 22nd July

Albania Grosso, Chair of LNFS England, met LNFS colleagues, including Javier Lozano (LNFS President), in Madrid last week to discuss our joint plans for the season ahead.

The following main points were agreed:

  • We will continue to develop the LNFS futsal brand worldwide, with several exciting international developments to be announced over the next few weeks.
  • LNFS colleagues in Spain will work with their counterparts in England to develop marketing and communications that are appropriate to the current level of development of English futsal.
  • Colleagues will also work together to develop a suitable broadcasting format for English futsal matches in a way that encourages viewers to want to participate in live futsal as either players or spectators.
  • The first Anglo-Spanish Cup will be held in 2022 in Spain between the two LNFS England Premiership play-off finalists and two leading Spanish sides (subject to the usual sanctioning requirements).
  • Spanish colleagues with English language proficiency will host webinars for LNFS England coaches and players to help develop both technical and club management skills.

Because of Covid-19, this eight-hour meeting was the first opportunity for LNFS and LNFS England colleagues to meet face to face rather than over a video link.

Albania said “It was great to meet Javier and LNFS colleagues, who live and breathe truly elite futsal. They provide inspirational leadership for the best futsal league in the world and I look forward to learning how to adapt their approach to the English situation.”

“The LNFS and LNFS England face similar challenges and opportunities” said Javier, “and by working together internationally we can collectively meet these challenges and enjoy the opportunities.”

GRASSROOTS FUTSAL BECOMES ACCESSIBLE TO ALL

Britain’s top futsal club ProFutsal London joins forces with North London Charity Bloomsbury Football.

ProFutsal London, 2021 National Futsal Series 1 Summer Showdown finalists and runners-up, will become an entity of the North London charity providing the best football experience for young players in the capital; Bloomsbury Football Foundation.

The Charity uses the power of football to improve the lives of young people, offering sustainable programmes that support active lifestyles, promote positive impacts and pursue full potentials, all powered by their visions of social cohesion, equality of opportunity and sporting excellence. Through holiday camps, school, open and foundation sessions, ‘Bears’ (eighteen-months to six year-olds),  girls and pan-disability programmes, as well as their own their own academy, Bloomsbury Football Foundation ensures every child has the opportunity to play football irrespective of their ability. And now, futsal joins that list, as ProFutsal London will join the Charity’s umbrella to become Bloomsbury Futsal, an add-on and futsal specific sector to Bloomsbury Football.

ProFutsal London began six years ago and was founded by former Arsenal Academy player and Aberdeen professional, Jon Kurrant, who despite his talent, didn’t enjoy the sport. He’s been part of the futsal format for eleven years now after being introduced to it during his time at University.  

“After Loughborough, I was coaching grassroots. Many concepts of what I was coaching were futsal components. A lot of parents and players really enjoyed it but said it felt different to what they were normally being taught. I was asked to set up a futsal session, and it blew up within a year, we started with an U12s team and then had a full pathway of U10s to U16s very quickly”.

ProFutsal’s current set-up encompasses U6s to U16s and a highly elite adult pathway. From next season, the U18s Development side will be split in two; into a Development team comprising peripheral First Team players, developmental players and impressive Academy graduates, and an U18s team of Academy graduates in need of experience. The First Team, which has seen seven of their players including Kurrant capped by the National side, have only been running the courts for four years but play in Tier One of the National Futsal Series and are one of two mainstay teams competing for the title. Their quality, despite their infancy, is testament to the First Team manager Juan Tapia-Owens, according to Kurrant.

“He is excellent, and could easily be a professional coach abroad. We’re quite lucky in that respect because that’s what’s catapulted us the last couple years and is what makes us compete at the top level. It’s gotten to the point where ProFutsal London is huge and is ready for better and bigger infrastructure, and Bloomsbury can support that and deliver our objectives, to expose futsal on a much bigger scale in London”.

The structural foundations of the organisation ProFutsal are set to befit is one that Kurrant describes as “one of the biggest grassroot infrastructures”. The reliability, quality, and expertise of Bloomsbury’s extensive task force of full-time and sessional staff already working to provide the plethora of programmes that they do, will be for Kurrant the best support futsal can ask for driving the sport.

“Our CPD (continued professional development) and knowledge of futsal in England is very strong. Now it’s about rolling that out. It’s about getting more sessions and exposing the game, that’s definitely what Bloomsbury can provide. Being able to get more coaches in, interested and involved is a massive plus. Having HR and a core to build from, will allow us to really concentrate on the court a lot more and build those sessions, rather than having to deal with venue finding and the administrative side. Bloomsbury alleviates that”. 

But maybe the most impressive for Kurrant, and simultaneously most important component of Bloomsbury’s infrastructure, especially for wanting to lift the level of provision of the sport of futsal in the capital, is how the Charity operates.   

“The model that Bloomsbury has, there’s not barriers to people playing. There’s a fixed rate for people that can afford it, but if you can’t afford it, there’s 50%, 75%, or full bursaries. That means we’re not leaving out players that could really benefit from Futsal and be exposed to something quite exciting in England. People that don’t make it in their football or don’t have the skillset to make it at the elite Academy level, have a massive opportunity to do so now with us in futsal”.

The nature of futsal is what makes it so strong as a development tool for football, but also as a format in it its own right as a game to be played at the higher level. “We want that to be just as much of a focus” stated Kurrant.

It serves as outlet for so many who may not favour the physicality of football due to being victim to how everyone’s biological age versus their chronological age differs. Instead, the format of futsal, because of the frequency of having the ball, quickens and improves decision making; where football may only have dwelled too heavily and unsavourily on physicality, something Kurrant wholly believes in.

“I played at a decent level of football, and I didn’t really enjoy it, because you don’t touch the ball as much. I was a centre midfielder, so I wanted the ball all the time. The futsal format allows you to be engaged with the game a lot more, especially goalkeepers who are as much an attacking influence as a defending one. You’re going to develop as a player, because you’re going to get the ball a lot more, and make more mistakes, and then learn from them and do the right things and understand why you’re doing them right”.

Impacting over 3000 beneficiaries, Bloomsbury is an organisation that uses sport as a vehicle in contributing to a collaborative and more cohesive society, educating, engaging, steering children away from anti-social behaviour and altogether developing children personally, through promoting soft skills. 

Now the tool of futsal, whether it be used for football or personal development, is due to be offered to so many future players.  

“I just know how much it’s going to grow. Not just the name of Bloomsbury or for Pro becoming a part of that name and growing, but Futsal doesn’t get the exposure it deserves. It’s a great game, I want to get it out to more kids and more adults. And I think we can do that, pushing on that infrastructure: there’s a platform to springboard from. I think we’ll be competing at the top for a long time. The biggest reason is because of the sustainability Bloomsbury will provide for the youth and adult players playing at highest level. Making sure that provision is at the highest standard possible in England, I think we’ll achieve that”, stated Kurrant.

For that reason alone, the amalgamation is extremely exciting, but for Bloomsbury’s CEO and Founder Charlie Hyman, it’s particularly special for another reason. Hyman has been involved, like Kurrant, with futsal for a number of years and himself is a ProFutsal London player too, and first-hand has experienced the value of the sport. It means the already familiar tried and tested relationship of Kurrant, Tapia-Owens and Hyman now suddenly becomes prolific on an entirely new level.

Hyman, speaking on the announcement, exclaimed that “Jon and Juan who currently run and manage Pro Futsal are incredible and have amazing knowledge and expertise in coaching futsal, and we feel that Bloomsbury as an organisation have the infrastructure to support them. Supporting futsal in growing an incredible programme, providing a better service, increasing the awareness of the sport, and elevating the sport of futsal which is still a niche sport in this country. Building both participation elements but also the elite pathways for young players to progress through into Youth teams, Development teams and First Team – both for boys, girls, men, and women”.

The partnership is part of a wider ambition to not only propel the sport of futsal into the household name it’s potential deserves, but for, what will now be Bloomsbury Futsal, to double its weekly participants of two-hundred in eighteen months, to build an equally elite women’s set-up both at Academy and First Team level, and to allow both First Teams within three to five years to be paid for their performances on the court.

“We are also looking forward to building our partnership with the University of Hertfordshire in delivering their futsal programme. Bryn Clark, UoH Deputy Director of Sport, is clearly as passionate as we are about the growth of Futsal and look forward to continuing this relationship going forward. The new structure will allow for a full pathway from youth to adults whilst allowing an incredible opportunity to study a degree alongside playing in the BUCS Premier as well as opportunities to play for Bloomsbury in the National Futsal Series”, expressed Juan Tapia-Owens.

Futsal in London, is due to explode. And to kick off the start of the accessible provision promised by the partnership, Bloomsbury Futsal is hosting FREE drop-in sessions every Wednesday 15:30-17:15 for school years 6-11, at Westway Sports & Fitness Centre, W10 6RP. Should you want to find out more about the drop-in sessions or Bloomsbury Futsal, visit the website, follow them on Instagram and Twitter, or contact Jon Kurrant at [email protected]

LNFS forms an alliance with FAF to develop futsal in Australia


The LNFS has entered into a long-term agreement with the Australian Futsal Federation that will see both the Australian Futsal governing body and LNFS work together on the growth and development of futsal in Australia and Oceania. This is another step in the expansion of the LNFS project to help promote the development of futsal worldwide, with Australia joining the agreements already reached with England, the Baltic countries, and the USA.

Futsal is experiencing enormous growth in Australia, where FAF promotes and develops futsal competitions from grassroots to local leagues in each state. Thanks to this partnership with the LNFS, the FAF now seeks to achieve its ultimate goal of creating the first Australian professional futsal league. The FAF is made up of men’s, women’s, and junior leagues and, with help from the LNFS, will promote the development of coaches and quality training, contributing to technical and tactical improvements to Australian futsal.

Antonio Cifuentes, president of FAF said: “This strategic partnership with the LNFS is the most important development for futsal in Australia in over a decade and we really looking forward to taking a large and inclusive approach to the growth and development of futsal in collaboration with the LNFS in the coming years.”

Javier Lozano, LNFS President, commented: “It is a pleasure for us to join the FAF project due to the intense interest shown and the enormous possibilities of futsal development throughout the country. It is a mutual responsibility that we assume with joy and determination”.

British Futsal Club Cup

Discussions with colleagues from futsal clubs playing in the different British nations show there is a strong appetite for an annual club competition – the British Futsal Club Cup – that would allow clubs from England, Northern Ireland, Scotland, and Wales to play against each other in a friendly tournament over a long weekend every summer.

The tournament would have the following structure, although all details are open for community discussion before a final decision is agreed between the clubs in the four nations (who would then seek sanction to enter this competition by their respective National Governing Bodies in the usual way):

  • The tournament would be held over three or four days during the summer period, after the end of the futsal and football seasons.
  • Two teams would enter the tournament from each nation, so there would be a total of eight teams from the four nations. The two teams from LNFS England would be the finalists in our Premiership play-off competition. Criteria for entries from other nations would be for the clubs in each home nation to decide.
  • The tournament venue would rotate around the nations each year. LNFS England would be happy to host the inaugural tournament in 2022 – at a venue in either the Midlands or the North with an international standard court and spectator seating (e.g. St. Georges’s Park).
  • The competition structure would be:
    • Two groups of four teams, with one club from each nation in each group, allocated at random. The four teams in each group play each other once, so every team has three matches during the group stage against a team from each other nation. There would be a total of 12 matches in the group stage (6 per group), with two matches per group per day (i.e. four matches across both groups) run over a period of three days, so every team plays once a day.
    • The top team from each group plays in a grand final to determine the overall tournament champion, with the possibility of additional matches for other teams beforehand to determine overall rankings (i.e. 3rd to 8th place).
    • All matches would be filmed and broadcast.
  • The host country league would pay for the venue, match officials, and match broadcasting and may choose to charge a spectator admission fee. Each team would pay for its own travel and accommodation. Any sponsorship for the tournament would be used first to reduce or eliminate the expenses of the host and then to reduce or eliminate the expenses of the participating teams. Once all host and participant expenses are reimbursed any surplus from the tournament would belong to the host.

We look forward to working with clubs and NGBs to progress this exciting initiative as soon as key colleagues in all Home Nations return from furlough.

Jose Carlos Lopez joins LNFS England as Technical Advisor

The LNFS England board would like to welcome Jose Carlos Lopez, the Spanish professional futsal player, as he joins the league as its Technical Advisor. Jose Carlos will be working with LNFS England clubs to improve the standard of futsal played on the court and to assist in transferring knowledge from LNFS in Madrid. He will combine his vast playing experience to improve standards on the court and the match-day experience for players in England.

Jose Carlos has been a professional futsal player for the past 18 years. His debut for Boadilla FS in the Spanish first division came at the age of seventeen, and since then he has played for many professional clubs in Spain, including Pinto FS, Tres Cantos, Carnicer Torrejon, Caja Segovia, Pescados Ruben Burela, and Jimbee Cartagenia. He appeared in four Spanish Cup finals, two play-off semi-finals in the Primera division, and received one golden boot award. During his career playing in the LNFS Jose Carlos scored around 230 goals in more than 500 matches spread over 14 seasons.

He already has a good knowledge of the game in England, having played for two seasons with Baku United in 2014/15 and 2015/16. Both seasons Baku United won the domestic double and in the second season they qualified for the UEFA Champions League main round, the only ever English club to do so. Jose Carlos was the leagues’ MVP and top-scorer in 2015/16, scoring 128 goals in around 50 matches during his time with Baku United. Over the years he has also made ten appearances for Helvecia in the UEFA Futsal Champions League.

He also has further experience with other European futsal leagues, having played in the Italian Serie A for Napoli Calcio 5, the French top-flight with Sporting Paris FS,  and in Croatia with Square Dubrovnik. Having played at a range of levels across Europe Jose Carlos will play a valuable role in helping English futsal develop, improving the standards on the court. He already has a good relationship with the LNFS in Madrid and has an excellent network with futsal clubs both in Spain and all across Europe.

Jose Carlos told us “It is a pleasure to be involved with LNFS England, an organisation linked with one I know well in LNFS. I will try to give my best to help develop futsal – making it more professional and widely known in the community. You have all the right things in place to be successful, so step by step and with patience we will achieve our goals”. Abrazos Jose Carlos! We can’t wait to get started. On behalf of all clubs in England who will benefit from your experience we want to thank you for helping to develop futsal in England!