An un­cer­tain fu­ture for foot­ballers


Three South Auck­land foot­ball clubs face un­cer­tain fu­tures should the North­ern Re­gion Foot­ball League have its way.

Pa­pakura City, One­hunga Man­gere and Man­gere United will have to find an­other league to play in be­cause of a pro­posal to get rid of NRFL di­vi­sion two.

The rec­om­men­da­tion is in a re­view of the NRFL by a work­ing group that com­prised rep­re­sen­ta­tives from the league’s three stake­hold­ers, Auck­land Foot­ball, North­ern Foot­ball and Waika­toBay of Plenty Foot­ball.

They’ve pro­duced a sev­en­point plan that in­cludes the re­moval of the di­vi­sion two com­pe­ti­tions - both pre­mier and re­serves - by 2019/2020.

The work­ing party says the re­vamp is to: ‘‘Pro­vide a re­gional com­pe­ti­tion to de­velop the most tal­ented do­mes­tic foot­ballers, ref­er­ees and coaches and pro­vide a path­way to na­tional and in­ter­na­tional hon­ours.’’

One­hunga Man­gere has blasted the pro­posal as elit­ist. ‘‘We be­lieve this pro­posal is based on a change for change sake at­ti­tude and is seen as a de­lib­er­ate push to try and cre­ate a com­pe­ti­tion for an elite group of larger clubs,’’ pres­i­dent Steve Matel­jan says.

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