Ardal Leagues

Last updated
Ardal Leagues
Founded2020
CountryFlag of Wales (1959-present).svg  Wales
Divisions2
Number of teams64
Level on pyramid3
(Welsh football league system)
Promotion to
Relegation to Mid Wales Football League
North East Wales Football League
North Wales Coast East Football League
North Wales Coast West Football League
Gwent County League
South Wales Alliance League
West Wales Premier League

The Ardal Leagues [1] are a football league in Wales. The word "ardal" translates as "district" in English. They have clubs with amateur/semi-professional status and sit at the third level of the Welsh football league system. The first year of their operation would have been 2020–21 but the 2020–21 Ardal North East season, 2020–21 Ardal North West season, 2020–21 Ardal South East season and 2020–21 Ardal South West season were all cancelled. [2] The inaugural season was moved to 2021–22. The creation of the leagues mark the first time the Football Association of Wales owns and is administering tier 3 of the Welsh league system. These changes follow from a review of the Welsh football pyramid. [3] To be eligible clubs need to meet the criteria for FAW tier 3 certification.

Contents

The league is split into two leagues, covering North and South Wales. Both Northern and Southern leagues have two regionally-based sections of sixteen clubs each:

The winners of each league are promoted to either the Cymru North or the Cymru South as long as they meet the FAW's tier 2 certification criteria. Subject to also meeting these criteria, the four runners-up clubs enter play-off matches with two of the clubs also gaining promotion [4] (one from the north and one from the south).

The Ardal Leagues structure replaced the former tier 3 leagues: Welsh Football League Division One, Mid Wales Football League Division One, Welsh Alliance League Division One and the Welsh National League Premier Division, leagues based in South Wales, Mid Wales, North West Wales and North East Wales respectively.

Relegation from the Ardal Leagues is to six local tier 4 leagues, with three clubs relegated from each of the tier 3 leagues at the end of the season. The tier 4 leagues are run by each of the Area Associations of Welsh football, the West Wales Football Association, the South Wales Football Association, the Gwent County Football Association, the Central Wales Football Association, the North East Wales Football Association and the North Wales Coast Football Association.

Ardal League teams

On 10 July 2020 the FAW confirmed the 64 teams in the new tier 3 leagues. [5] In an attempt to avoid dividing the current Mid-Wales teams across all four leagues, the North-East league contains a large contingent of the Mid-Wales teams. The North-West league contains the sides near the North Wales coast. After confirmation of their inclusion STM Sports announced on 27 July that they had folded, leaving only 15 sides in the South West league. On 3 August it was confirmed that Cardiff Draconians had been promoted from the South Wales Alliance League to fill the remaining place in the league. [6]
Since COVID-19-originated restrictions were put in place by the FAW, as from 10 August, clubs could have trained in groups of 15 and contact training would have been allowed at all-levels of football. However, competitive and exhibition matches were still not allowed to take place. [7] Consequently, the FAW decided to cancel what was to be the Ardal Leagues' inaugural 2020–21 season on 4 February 2021, [2] and on 26 March, Montgomery Town withdrew from the North East league for pandemic-related reasons. [8]

2021–22 season

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Locations of teams in the 2020–21 season of Ardal leagues [9]

Applicants for FAW Tier 3 Certification

For the 2020–21 season 93 clubs applied for FAW tier 3 Certification. [10] 84 clubs were successful in their applications. [11]

See also

Related Research Articles

Ynysygerwn Football Club is a Welsh football club based in Aberdulais, situated approximately two miles from Neath town centre. The club currently competes in the Ardal Leagues South West, the third tier of the Welsh football pyramid.

STM Sports F.C. Football club

STM Sports Association Football Club was a Welsh football club. They were based in St Mellons, Cardiff and played at Cardiff University Sports fields.

Cefn Albion F.C. Association football club in Wales

Cefn Albion Football Club is a Welsh football club from the village of Cefn Mawr in Wrexham County Borough. The club was founded in 2013 and plays in the Ardal Leagues North East, in the third tier of the Welsh football league system.

Cymru North Association football league in Wales

The Cymru North is a regional football league in Wales, covering the northern half of the country. It has semi-professional status clubs and together with the Cymru South, it forms the second tier of the Welsh football league system.

Cymru South Association football league in Wales

The Cymru South is a regional football league in Wales, covering the southern half of the country. It has semi-professional status clubs and together with the Cymru North, it forms the second tier of the Welsh football league system.

Ynyshir Albions F.C. are a Welsh football team based in the village Ynyshir in the Rhondda Valley. They currently have a senior side in the Ardal Leagues South West, the third tier of the Welsh football pyramid.

The South Wales Alliance League is a football league structure in South Wales, currently known for sponsorship reasons as The Highadmit Projects South Wales Alliance League. The top tier of the league, the Premier Division is at the fourth tier of the Welsh Football Pyramid and offers promotion opportunities to the tier 3 Football Association of Wales administered Ardal Leagues. The league is run by the South Wales Football Association.

West Wales Premier League Association football league in Wales

The West Wales Premier League is a football league in Wales, at tier 4 of the Welsh Football Pyramid in South West Wales under the control of the West Wales Football Association. The league consists of teams having their grounds and headquarters West of a line drawn from Briton Ferry, Neath, northwards to Glynneath, and then again northwards to the boundary line of the South Wales Football Association. It offers promotion opportunities to the Ardal Leagues, at tier 3 of the Football Association of Wales pyramid.

The 2020–21 Cymru Premier was the 29th season of the Cymru Premier, the highest football league within Wales since its establishment in 1992. Connah's Quay Nomads were the defending champions. Teams played each other twice on a home and away basis, before the league split into two groups after phase 1 matches were completed.

Montgomery Football Club is a Welsh football team based in the town Montgomery, Powys, Wales.

Machynlleth Football Club is a Welsh football team based in Machynlleth, Powys, Wales. They play in the Ardal Leagues North East, which is in the third tier of the Welsh football league system.

St Asaph City Football Club is a Welsh football team based in St Asaph, Denbighshire, Wales. They play in the Ardal Leagues North West, which is in the third tier of the Welsh football league system.

Clwb Pêl Droed Y Felinheli is a Welsh football team based in the village of Y Felinheli, Gwynedd, Wales. They play in the Ardal Leagues North West, which is in the third tier of the Welsh football league system.

Llanuwchllyn Football Club is a Welsh football team based near Bala in Wales. They play in the Ardal Leagues North West, which is in the third tier of the Welsh football league system.

Cardiff Draconians Football Club is a Welsh football team based in Gabalfa, Cardiff, Wales. They play in the Ardal Leagues South West which is in the third tier of the Welsh football league system.

Pencoed Athletic BGC is a Welsh football team based in Pencoed, Wales. They play in the South Wales Alliance League Premier Division which is in the fourth tier of the Welsh football league system. They are the current champions of the league and were eligible for promotion to the Ardal Leagues but were not granted tier 3 Football Association of Wales certification despite appealing the decision.

The 2020–21 Ardal NE season was to be the first season of the new third-tier northern region football in Welsh football pyramid, part of the Ardal Leagues. Teams were to play each other twice on a home and away basis.

The 2020–21 Ardal NW season was to be the first season of the new third-tier northern region football in Welsh football pyramid, part of the Ardal Leagues. Teams were to play each other twice on a home and away basis.

The 2020–21 Ardal SW season was to be the first season of the new third-tier northern region football in Welsh football pyramid, part of the Ardal Leagues. Teams were to play each other twice on a home and away basis.

The 2020–21 Ardal SE season was to be the first season of the new third-tier southern region football in Welsh football pyramid, part of the Ardal Leagues. Teams were to play each other twice on a home and away basis.

References

  1. "ARDAL LEAGUES COMPLETE DOMESTIC PYRAMID RESTRUCTURE". Football Association of Wales. 28 July 2020. Retrieved 28 July 2020.
  2. 1 2 Jones, Jordan (4 February 2021). "Football season cancelled for many in Wales after FAW meeting". Y Clwb Pêl-Droed. Retrieved 14 April 2021.
  3. "The Pyramid Review". Football Association of Wales. Retrieved 24 May 2019.
  4. Llyr, Owain. "Welsh football: Leagues restructure confirmed by FAW". BBC Sport. Retrieved 30 July 2020.
  5. "Membership of Tier 3 leagues confirmed". Football Association of Wales. Retrieved 13 July 2020.
  6. Jones, Jordan. "Cardiff Draconians admitted to Ardal Leagues". Y Clwb Pel-Droed. Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  7. "FAW News" . Retrieved 3 August 2020.
  8. "Montgomery Town have withdrawn from the Ardal Leagues". Y Clwb Pêl-Droed. 26 March 2021. Retrieved 14 April 2021.
  9. "Granted FAW Tier 3 Certification for 2020 / 21 season" (PDF). Football Association of Wales. 25 June 2020. Retrieved 1 July 2020.
  10. "FAW TIER 2 & TIER 3 APPLICANTS CONFIRMED". Football Association of Wales. 10 January 2020. Retrieved 29 January 2020.
  11. Jones, Jordan (8 July 2020). "Seven clubs granted Tier Three Certificate on appeal". Y Clwb Pel-Droed. Retrieved 30 July 2020.