In the world of football, there are hundreds of amateur and professional leagues run by experts and veterans of the industry. These leagues are of varying levels involving thousands of teams and hundreds of thousands of players.
But have you heard of a football league created by a schoolboy at the age of 16? Probably not. I only found out about this quite recently. And it’s not only a league, but also a football club with ambitions to play in the professional league of their country.
Today, we talk about this 16-year-old boy, his football club, and his own league, which is successfully developing and taking its place among other amateur leagues of Kyiv, and of Ukraine as a whole.
Hi Daniil! Tell us a little about yourself and how you came up with the idea of creating a football club?
– Hello! My name is Daniil Vlasiuk. I am 16 years old and I’m from Kyiv. More than a year ago, I was inspired by the idea of creating my own football team because of the problems I encountered in this area at a young age. Perhaps this is totally correct, but my dream is to prove that it is possible to study for 16 years first, then work in promotions and, at a very young age, create and do some kind of business.
Very strong thoughts and desires! Tell us about how your FC is doing today and what your plans are for the future?
– FC “Predator” was founded in the fall of 2019. The plans (and this is precisely a plan and a task, and not just a dream) for 7 years of the team’s existence is to obtain the status of a professional team and enter the Second Football League of Ukraine. “Predator” this spring gathers a new team, which will build for the future. The team currently has a roster of 16 players, two coaches, a cameraman, a photographer, a playing director, and me, a playing president of the team. The home stadium is considered to be a football field on the territory of local school No.203. Also, our team already has two sponsors – a general one (textile company “Jacquard Tex”) and a technical one (Outpatient clinic of Family Medicine “Julia”). In the near future, our plan for the new season of “Futics-League” is to find another sponsor, assemble a new roster, introduce live broadcasts on YouTube, and order equipment for the whole team (suits, two kits, training shirts).
The second football league provides for participation in the championship throughout the whole country, right? If FC “Predator” gets into the second league of the Ukrainian Football Championship, what goals will be set for the team? Will FC “Predator” continue to participate in your own amateur league?
– Yes, before entering the Second Football League of Ukraine, there are still many difficulties to go through. In our country, to maintain your own team, for at least 80% of the teams, is not an income-generating activity but a cost-generating one. To enter the Second League, you need to obtain the professional status of the team. It means that the team will need a lot of things – a home turf, its own youth football school, and so on. I think that the development of youth will be a priority in our club. With regards to our amateur league, I would like to have a “PREDATOR AMATEUR” team in the future. It will be this team that will play in our league. A feature of this team will be that any fan of the team can play for our farm club participating in the “Futics” championship.
Where did the idea to create your own soccer league come from?
– Some time ago, in the fall of 2020, together with my friend, Vladimir Pavliy, we decided to create our own league. At first, this idea was based more for the championship in which the FC “Predator” will play. We were able to gather only 6 teams and collected the minimum contribution from the teams for awards and the prize pool at the end of the season (less than $30 per team for a season). Subsequently, the championship grew into a real league under discussion. Those present at the matches with great interest discussed each round and the results, the standings etc. The fans had a desire to come even to the other side of the city just to support their team. Some matches were attended by whole support groups who provided chants, pyrotechnics, banners and posters during the matches.
How is the first season of “Futics-League” going?
– At the moment, the first stage of the championship of the debut season has been fully completed. 6 teams played the regular season (10 rounds). The first 4 teams made it to the playoffs and are now playing the final games.
Which teams are involved?
– The following teams take part in the league this season: FC “TRAP” (Kyiv), SC “SPARTA” (Kyiv), FC “Predator” (Kyiv) FC “SHEFFIELD” (Kyiv), FC “FUNWAKE” (Brovary), and FC “OLYMPIC” (Kyiv). At the moment, more than 30 games have been held. During this time, 4 different locations have been used throughout Kyiv.
Does your league have partners and sponsors?
– At the moment, all finances are covered by the organization. But I will say that we were offered a partnership by the most popular amateur organization in Kyiv. Perhaps they will become our partners in the near future.
What are your plans for the second season?
– The second season will be held this summer. In fact, preparations for that season began about a month ago. Our own website currently is under development. It will contain all the information about us, about each team, and about the history and records of the “Futics-League.” Of course, the latest match results and an update of the tournament table will also be there.
The next innovation is the league cup in addition to the regular championship. Participating teams will be able to participate in the Cup. One of the main innovations will also be a new format of the game where we will now play big football (11×11)!
Another very good feature will be the “football player’s passport.” It will be provided by each player of the team before the start of the match. This is to make sure that the player is declared and can play for his team. These are so far the only innovations. We do expect that some difficulties may arise with the rest.
Danilo, thanks for the informative interview! We wish you inspiration and strength in the implementation of all your ideas and plans, and for the success and prosperity of the “Predator” FC and the “Futics-League!”
Translated by Aldo Tong