Football Futures Pathway BTEC / A Level

About the Course

Doncaster Elite Football Academy (DEFA) and Hall Cross Academy present an exciting opportunity for young male and female footballers to continue their development in an educational setting, which provides outstanding teaching and course delivery alongside UEFA A licence coaching and elite competition.

We provide an outstanding educational pathway for young people using the key characteristics of elite performers to develop confident, ambitious and motivated athletes with the ability to learn, adapt and grow.

Our dynamic training model is designed to create curious and inquisitive players who can read the game and find live solutions.

Our coaches and tutors have a wealth of experience as professional footballers, UEFA A-licence coaches and qualified teachers. We guarantee you an elite experience.

How to Apply
Football Futures


Please refer to our Sixth Form prospectus for entry requirements.

Course Content


Through our unique partnership with Hall Cross Academy, we offer the BTEC National Diploma (2 A-level equivalent) or Extended Diploma (3 A-Level equivalent) in Sport and Exercise Science and the choice of additional A-Levels to supplement your studies. Our academic programmes allow students to develop the essential skills, knowledge and qualifications required to progress into a career in sport, leisure and health, either directly, or through higher education. Students will study full-time under the guidance of the Doncaster Elite Academy coaches and qualified teachers. Lessons are delivered over a period of two-years with a mixture of theory and practical sessions and assessed through external exams, observed practical assessments, written reports, presentations, discussions, case studies and workbooks. Your curriculum will include an elite football pathway which takes theory from the classroom and applies it practically through coaching, practice and competitive gameplay. You will study a selection of mandatory and optional units including Sport and Exercise Physiology, Sport and Exercise Psychology, Sports Coaching, Sport and Exercise Massage and Sports Nutrition. *The Diploma (2 a-level) pathway allows students to study a wide range of additional A Levels. This route may limit access to football due to the academic timetable, but each student would have a bespoke experience dependent on their subjects.


Students will train up to five days per week focusing on the Principles of play and game intelligence. We use a games based approach which is progressive and realistic and instils in players a sense of confidence and creativity. Coaching programmes are designed to mirror the ethos and schedule of players attending professional academies. Players will be given individual learning opportunities as well as position specific training.


Students will represent Doncaster Elite Football Academy in the English Colleges League, and also have the option to join the U19 Junior Premier League as part of DEFA, competing in their National Saturday leagues. We will host a series of fixtures against football league academy sides and there will also be elite coaching sessions from our partner clubs including Sheffield United and Atletico Madrid. There will also be the opportunity to access an annual international football tour.

Personalised experience

As a player in our Academy, you will receive a bespoke student pathway. You will be mentored by your tutor on academic progress and practical performance and will receive regular reviews and guidance. You will have the opportunity to complete further qualifications in coaching, sports injuries and officiating as part of the course.

Your Future

  • Access to higher education
  • Partnership with Leeds Beckett University and Sheffield Hallam University
  • Direct employment in the Sport and Leisure industry
  • Showcase games with semi-professional and English Football League clubs
  • Opportunity to showcase talent as an English schools representative
  • Coaching and officiating opportunities within Doncaster Elite Football Academy
  • Apprenticeship / employment opportunities within Doncaster Elite Football Academy