Sunday league football
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Sunday league football is a term used in England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland to describe the association football leagues which play on Sunday, as opposed to the more usual Saturday. These leagues tend to be lower standard amateur competitions, whose players have less time to devote to football. The term pub league may also be used, owing to the number of public houses that enter teams.
Sunday leagues are sanctioned by the local County Football Association. There is no organised promotion or relegation between leagues, unlike in the National League System, which covers the top few levels of amateur football, although many leagues operate several divisions with promotion and relegation between them. However, ambitious Sunday teams may apply to join a Saturday league for a higher standard of football, and from there graduate to the FA-sanctioned leagues.
The most prominent single location for Sunday league football is Hackney Marshes in east London. The oldest Sunday League in England is the Edmonton & District Sunday Football League, based in North London, which was formed in 1925. One of the best known Sunday league teams is Senrab F.C., for whom Jermain Defoe and John Terry once played.
Sunday leagues also exist in Scotland, where they make use of local council-owned pitches and facilities for nominal fees and are known as Sunday amateur football, mostly coming away from the perception of "pub leagues".
In 1991, Danny Baker hosted The Game, a TV series focusing on East London Sunday League matches at Hackney Marshes, on Friday nights on LWT. The title of the show was a spoof of The Match, formerly The Big Match, the banner under which major league matches were televised on ITV at the time. The series ran for six episodes, culminating in the final of the Dick Coppock Cup (for Division Four of the league).
- "Edmonton & District Sunday Football League". www.edmontonsundayfootball.co.uk. Retrieved 8 April 2018.
- "Danny Baker's 'The Game': the best football programme you've never watched". shortlist.com. 25 May 2017.
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