United London FC puts fans in the dugout

Monday, June 20, 2016

By: Sport Industry Group

A new amateur football club, which claims to be the world’s first team with no traditional manager, will line up in the Essex Alliance Premier League next season.

The club is supporter managed, giving fans the opportunity to have a hand in choosing the development of the squad. This includes giving fans a weekly online vote to decide which of the squad players should make the starting XI and which formation they should play.

Decisions can be made by fans through the club’s website, which will include footage from training and the previous matches as well as other statistical guides and heat maps.

United London also hopes to utilise social media to engage with fans, player reports will be issued to supporters each week to help with the starting XI selection and matches will also be shown via social media.

Trials will also give hundreds of players the opportunity to be part of the team, many of which will be among the 700 released from football club academies every year. The club hopes that Jamie Vardy’s rise from non-league to Premier League will inspire youngsters and hired Vardy lookalike Lee Chapman to help launch the club.   

While the team will not have a manager, the team has appointed Leon Constantine as first team coach. The former professional footballer has experience of non-league football and stated his career at Edgeware Town.

"United London FC has been created by genuine football fans and not millionaire business owners." said chairman Mark North.

"We're in love with the game and wanted to do more than just sit back and watch. We wanted fans to engage.

"So we decided to create something honest and accessible that gives football fans the chance to have direct impact in the running a real life football club.

"As a manager, you will log in online, choose your players based on stats, videos and the assistant manager's detailed report. The players who get the most votes start the game."