Frequently Asked Questions

General Club FAQs

General questions about Nova United and how it operates

How can I, as a parent/guardian, help?

There are many ways to be involved in the club and every contribution is warmly welcomed.

Of course there are many committee roles, but we appreciate that level of involvement might not suit everyone. You might be able to help in the following ways, though (this is not an exhaustive list):

Coffee shop – On Saturdays, while training is taking place, parents, visitors and youngsters can buy hot and cold drinks and snacks from our club house. We rely on helpers for this and even if you can only offer an occasional Saturday morning while your child trains, you would be welcomed and your input very much appreciated.

Refereeing – Our games on Sundays and during tournaments all need referees and for older age groups, two people running the lines as well. Sometimes it’s hard for our managers to arrange referees and lines people, so the more we have available the easier it makes their job. At many levels no more than a normal understanding of the basic rules of football is required. We can provide a whistle 😉

If you’ve ever played the game, you’re probably ideal for this. There’s usually some boot lace tying involved as well…

Setting up – There are some pieces to put in place before matches, such as putting up goal nets and setting out Respect Lines and corner flags. It doesn’t take a lot of effort but it is one more thing the managers, coaches and committee members don’t have to worry about.

Be a sponsor – If you run a business or have an employer you can talk to about his, we’re always looking for support at all levels. It doesn’t cost a fortune to make a huge difference to a team, buying new strips, waterproof jackets and other bits and pieces. We’re actively looking at more ways of exposing the names and logos of our generous sponsors so that you can see the benefit. Your community will be grateful when they see your name!

How can my child get involved?

The best way to explore becoming part of Nova United Junior Football Club is to come down to training on a Saturday morning (in bad weather it’s best to check this website to ensure it hasn’t been cancelled). You can talk to managers and committee members and we can help to introduce children to the appropriate team.

Once the season is underway, teams can fill their quota of players eligible to play in league matches, but there is often still space for more to train and those players can take part in friendly matches and tournaments.

How do you work out the fees?

We have, through great efforts of committee members over time, worked very hard to keep the membership fees as low as possible.

This has been done by asking for occasional contributions to pieces of kit (shorts, socks, etc), attracting sponsors, benefiting from the generosity of people willing to referee at no cost and careful financial management.

We understand that we are one of the lowest cost clubs in the county. Annual membership is just £90 for players who are registered with the FA to take part in the league. We are keen to try and keep our fees below the £100 mark and we hope parents appreciate the value this offers.

Players who are not registered to play in the league but do wish to train with us and play friendly matches are only asked to pay our basic membership fee of £45.

The fees the club charges help to cover some of our many costs, including maintaining the pitches and clubhouse, insurances, FA affiliation costs, supplying teams with training equipment and footballs and funding hundreds of medals and trophies given out at the award ceremonies our teams hold each year.

We used to play in the rain as children. Why do you cancel training and matches when it’s wet?

None of our coaches or players mind a bit of rain! The problem is that once the ground is very wet the pitches get churned up and turn to mud. If they then freeze while in this state, that makes things even worse. When this happens they can become unplayable for weeks on end and cost literally thousands of pounds to put right. Disappointing as it can be, it’s better to miss a week than to miss six weeks and put club finances at risk.

Please also be aware that our grounds are managed by very hard working volunteers, who give as much time as they can freely to do this. During the season if there is any question over the state of the ground, committee members are out before 7am carrying inspections on everyone’s behalf and often have a very difficult decision to make.

Cancellations are not made lightly. We’re all here because we love our children to play the game!

Why aren’t kick-off times the same each week?

Each team’s fixtures generally alternate between home and away. When matches are at home, the Nova United league secretary will allocate pitches and kick-off times. Different age groups require different pitch sizes and we have four pitches to meet these needs.

Of course teams who need the same size of pitch can’t all use it at once, so we have to stagger start times. Some age groups are allocated referees by the FA, which means those fixtures have to be co-ordinated to make best use of the referees’ time and they, therefore, take priority.

When a team has an away match the kick-off time is a matter for the hosting club, which will often have similar considerations as those outlined above. The facilities available also vary greatly club by club.

Why do some teams ‘charge’ extra on top of membership?

Each team is free to operate its own system of funding to cover costs it may incur.

Sometimes funds are needed to pay for referees on the occasions when volunteers cannot be found. Also some teams like to have a fund to provide a treat for the players at Christmas or perhaps in the summer.

Many choose to add extra equipment for their players over and above what is provided by sponsorship or by the club.

Nova United itself provides key equipment, including training balls, match balls, bibs, cones, poles, kit bag and first aid kit. Some teams choose to supplement this with other training aids or perhaps additional functional clothing, such as training tops and coats.

Team funds are often supplemented by asking for a small weekly contribution from parents or by pitch-side activities during games, such as selling hot drinks and snacks or raffle tickets.

Why have I been asked to pay for a strip or for socks and shorts?

We do all we can to keep the cost of participating in junior football in Newport to an absolute minimum.

The membership subscription doesn’t cover the cost of kit, so either a manager has to find a sponsor to support the cost (as many do) or parents will need to pay for their own child’s strip. Sometimes a sponsor will cover the cost of just a shirt, so the only thing you’ll be asked to pay for is shorts and socks.

We only require plain black shorts and football socks, meaning that a certain brand or type is not required. Players are welcome to provide their own or re-use last years’ (if they still fit!).

Many other sports require much more (and much more expensive) equipment.

Why isn’t my child able to play in the team on Sundays?

Our teams play their matches in leagues which are governed by Football Association rules. This means that a team must have suitably registered and eligible players, both for the purposes of ensuring fair play and so that players are properly covered by the relevant insurances.

The FA sets limits on the amount of players a team can have in its eligible playing squad. This is generally twice the number allowed on the pitch at any one time – so, for example, 14 signed players for seven-a-side age groups.

Once a team has its full complement it cannot sign any new players unless some leave or transfer to other teams. Transfers are also governed by an official process which must be observed by all sides.

However, our teams are welcoming of players even if they don’t have space to sign them. Non-signed players can still become club members (at a greatly reduced membership fee), can train with the teams in their regular sessions and can take part in friendly matches and tournaments, which are often held after the official league fixtures are completed in the late spring/early summer.