Oxford United Football & Education Academy What’s it all about?

Who can apply?

Our courses are aimed at 16- 19 year old talented footballers, both male and female, who would like to combine level 3 (post-16) academic/vocational studies with a full-time football development programme. So anyone who is in Year 11 and currently studying for their GCSE’s this summer is eligible to apply. We are also happy to accept learners who might have completed their 1st year (year 12) of post-16 education or training elsewhere and would like to change their educational pathway.

For how to apply see advertisement on the opposite page or visit the website:


So what exactly do I get from the programme? 

Learners/players will get a range of benefits from studying on our programmes. These include:

• The L3 BTEC Extended Diploma in Sport (Performance & Excellence). This is the equivalent to 3 A-levels. The L3 90-credit Diploma will be completed by the end of year 1 (YDS option).

• Opportunity to complete FA coaching awards/badges

• Opportunity to represent Oxford United in the FCYA, PLFL, ECFA and BCS (female) leagues against high quality opposition (a range of other league and non-league clubs as well as various sports colleges).

• Train and experience the environment of a professional footballer. All out programmes run on site at the training ground alongside the 1st team, the U’21 development squad and Youth team.

• Daily individual and team coaching by Uefa qualified coaches.

• Regular and tailored strength and conditioning programmes designed by our Academy Head of Sports science.

• A fun and challenging environment for all.

• Opportunity to re-take Maths and English GCSE through our education partner The Oxford Academy if you didn’t manage to get a C or above during the summer exams.

What’s the difference between the 1 year and 2 year courses?

The one year YDS programme (male only) is more focused on those who have been at or released from professional academies at the 7-16 age ranges. The aim is to give these boys the opportunity to gain a Youth team scholarship with OUFC at the end of their year here with us. Learners will study the BTEC L3 90-credit Diploma over 1 year (equivalent to 1 and half A-levels). The 2-year programme is open to anyone (both male and female) who has an avid interest in football and is of certain level of footballing ability (see trial process below). On this pathway learners will study the full extended diploma over two years. The training and football development programme will mirror exactly that of the Youth team and YDS programmes.

Do I have to trial and what do I need to study the L3 Extended or 90-credit diplomas?

Yes after you have applied you will be invited to a trial, where your footballing ability will be assessed. If successful, you will be offered a place on our programme. As part of the application process you will be required to give us your predicted GCSE results. This is to ascertain whether you are suitable for the academic elements of the programme. We would ideally like learners to have achieved 4 A-C’s at GCSE.

History of the programme?

The programme has proved hugely successful for both the football club and the people who have completed our programmes over the last 7 years. There are a number of success stories both from a footballing and academic point of view. To name but a few:

• Eight lads have been awarded scholarships with the football club on the back of the Football and Education programmes in the last 6-7 years since our programmes have been in operation.

• Other graduates are currently over in the US on Soccer scholarships with various universities/colleges as a direct result of playing for OUFC.

• Demi Lambourne is currently goalkeeper for the England Ladies Under 19 squad

• Four of our latest Year 13 cohort of 15 learners have applied and been accepted onto University courses around the country

“I can really see the progression I have made in my football since I have started coming here. Playing at a high level & being coached by high level coaches really improves your game when you do it on a regular basis. It’s a great opportunity to be around the first-team training ground & to be in a professional football setting, which many people don’t get the chance to do. The lessons are good as well as the work relates to football a lot, which helps with understanding & makes it more interesting.” – Harry O’Neill