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Welcome to the Scottish Youth Football League.
A concept rebrand and redevelopment of the youth football system in Scotland.
The Scottish Youth Football League is a personal concept series to showcase the potential for a rebranded and revamped Scottish youth football system. Currently, the youth system in Scotland is divided up into regional organisations, for this concept series we will be focusing on the area that I played growing up, the southwest coast of the country, specifically South Ayrshire. The organisation West Youth Football League Scotland (WestYFL) controls all league and cup competitions in the surrounding area, with different groups governing the sport in different regions across Scotland. This, I believe, could be an area we can improve upon to begin the rebuilding process for the professional game in the country.
Therefore, the concept created here is to unite all factions into one governing body for youth football in the country, to operate directly with the Scottish FA, simply branded as the Scottish Youth Football League (SYFL). In terms of league splits, it is from there that the SYFL would split into regions, specifically using each council region to designate local areas. This will make it easier not only for the Scottish FA and member clubs to track the progress of the game at each age level, but also help each area grow exponentially from within due to each regional division being overseen by local authorities in regards to match organisation, playing field availability and quality of equipment.
For the SYFL logo group simplicity is key, due to the logos being replicated nationwide with varying printing styles and budgets to cover those costs, with recognisable national symbols and colours. The official SYFL logo is a traditional crest shape, a blue shield with the white saltire of Scotland atop it, as well as the league initials SYFL above and the organisations' founding year below. This primary logo then acts as a base for the regional (secondary) logos, which form around the shield in a roundel, encompassing the full league name, name of the region and a secondary background saltire of varying colour.
The primary element that differentiates every region is the colour scheme with each region having a palette unique to itself, the South Ayrshire region with a colour scheme of nautical blue and sand, representing the area's coastline, arguably its best known asset.
Scottish Youth Football League Member Clubs
South Ayrshire Division.
Ayr Boswell Football Club
Location: Ayr Ground: King George V Playing Fields
Ayr Boswell was founded in 1963 as Ayr Boswell Boys Club, making it one of the oldest youth football clubs in Scotland. The club crest is a roundel with a lion rampant in the centre, I have stayed with that theme, redesigning the lion and adjusting font and colours. The club in recent years has used several different colour schemes for their kits, with no true identity staying with them year after year, back in the late 2000s however, the kits throughout all age groups were red and blue with white details, so those are the official colours I have chosen for the home kit with sublimated vertical stripes, and an all white away kit to match. Before the red, white and blue settled too, and when I first joined the club in 2005, the home kit was blue and yellow vertical stripes, so that has been chosen as the third kit, with a matching colour retro crest.
Ayr Juniors Football Club
Location: Ayr Ground: Ayr Old Racecourse
Staying in Ayr we also have Ayr Juniors, a relatively new but successful club based at the Old Racecourse where the annual Land o' Burns tournament is held each year. Their current logo is simply a thistle design surrounded by their name, I've stuck to those simplistic principles for their re-brand, with a new angular thistle design surrounded by their full name and, below the thistle, a quote from the area's most famous resident Robert Burns, featured in one of his poems and also now the official motto of South Ayrshire Council. The home kit is all-navy with sublimated hoops and white and burgundy accents, with the away kit all-white with navy accents and a chevron across the chest. The third kit uses burgundy as the primary colour, with a sublimated gradient design featuring the outline of the Isle of Arran seen across the sea from Ayr, navy shorts and further white details complete the look, as well as a simplified club crest with only the thistle present.
Barassie Football Club
Location: Barassie Ground: Hosiery Park
A concept club that is an original Kylonian Design creation for this series, the small town of Barassie that now acts as a suburb of the larger Troon to the south, currently does not have an active youth football team so Barassie F.C. would fill that gap. The primary colour is purple, a popular colour for sports teams in the area, with secondary colours of sand and white, the sand coming from the very beautiful Barassie beach. The main feature of the logo is a heron, in flight, a native sea bird to the area. The home kit uses alternating shades of purple in a unique half and half design that is mirrored on the back of the jersey, with white shorts and sand details throughout. The away kit is predominantly white, with a single vertical stripe splitting the jersey in shades of purple mimicking the home kit, with purple shorts and white socks. The shorts would be interchangeable between the home and away kits. The third kit is a special design taken from the club crest, with white rays of sunlight representing the sunset at Barassie on an all-sand kit. The heron breaks free from the crest and flies solo on the jersey and shorts.
Caledonian Football Club
Location: Prestwick Ground: Academy Park
We now arrive at our first team from my hometown, Prestwick. Founded in 1985, Caledonian Youth Club are based at Academy Park, adjacent to both Prestwick Academy and Glasgow Prestwick Airport. The current crest is simply a roundel with a player striking a ball in front of another stylised ball, I hoped to take the club's identity in a new direction, focusing on the connections to their town, and most specifically due to their location, the town's aviation history. The roundel remains, with the focal point being a stylised military aircraft resting on a saltire, showing the history of the club's name and location and keeping the traditional yellow and black colours with red accents. The crest has been made to be versatile so to be easily re-coloured if required, and in the instance of the third kit for the club I have used a black and gold variation, with gold diagonal pinstripes on an all-black kit for a classic look. The colour scheme for the home kit has retained its signature yellow and black look, with a sublimated saltire across the front. The away kit uses black and red as the primary colours, with another saltire appearing across the chest and Caledonian yellow as highlights.
Carrick Colts Football Club
Location: Maybole Ground: Glebe Park
For our next team we move to the small town of Maybole, and another club that has a lot of history, Carrick Colts were established in 1967 and have won several league and cup championships over several age groups throughout their history. The club's crest is a horse, front-facing, with their signature colour scheme of black and white. For their new crest I have adapted the horse in a different style, designing from a side viewpoint and with the intention to create motion in the image, with the horse in a galloping stance reflecting greater movement. The club's name is displayed in circular format around the central image, with the C's in the name adapted as horseshoes. The colours of black and white stay accompanied by the most frequently used tertiary colour for the club, red. The traditional home kit of the club is black and white vertical stripes so that is what I've created with black being the predominant colour. The away kit features an all-white base and thin silver pinstripes and details as the sublimation. The third kit uses alternating shades of red and white details with a sublimated vertical band on the right side of the kit, and also features a simplified club crest with only the horse present.
Coylton Football Club
Location: Coylton Ground: Coylton Playing Fields
We now move to the small town of Coylton, just East of Ayr it is the smallest town to feature with a team in the series. Coylton's colours are orange, black and white with blue frequently used for secondary kits. Their current crest is a generic football inside in a roundel, I've kept the roundel as a base and added a hawthorn leaf as the central element. The leaf comes from a famous hawthorn tree in town that pays tribute to the 'trysting thorn' tree that Robert Burns mentioned in his poem 'The Soldier's Return' that was said to have been situated in what is now Coylton. The home kit is primarily orange with a black and white sash across the front, paired with black shorts and orange socks. The away is all-white with an orange gradient vertical stripe across the right side of the front of the jersey and the third kit uses blue as a base with a sublimated vertical stripe made from hawthorn leaves matching the logo as the primary detail, and a specially coloured crest to match.
Dundonald Smugglers Football Club
Location: Dundonald Ground: Dundonald Castle Playing Fields
Dundonald Smugglers are a concept club to add to the SYFL series. There have been several clubs to play at youth level from Dundonald, however, none have lasted for a considerable length of time. The name Smugglers comes from "Smugglers' Trail", a walking path still in use today that runs from Dundonald to the sea at Troon, and that was used centuries ago by smugglers landing on the Ayrshire coast. The logo reflects that heritage with a scroll across the top featuring the club name, and vintage barrels as the centrepiece, further symbolising the smuggling history of the area. The home kit plays into that vibe too, with varying shades of burgundy and a cross across the chest, reflecting straps that would have helped carry heavy barrels on smugglers' backs. The away kit is primarily light blue with a horizontal chest band and burgundy details, and the third kit features the same design as the home in dark shades of grey and black, with flecks of gold in the logo to indicate real gold that could have been smuggled around the area in the past.
Girvan Mariners Football Club
Location: Girvan Ground: Victory Park
Another original concept club for the series and Girvan's representative in the South Ayrshire Division, I have named Girvan Mariners after the town's rich maritime history. The logo reflects that simply and strongly, with a ship's wheel design creating a unique and visually engaging look for the club. The logo can be altered easily with any of the club's colours; navy, sea blue and gold. The primary kit features an exclusive wave design in navy and gold with sea blue accents. The away features the same design sublimated in varying shades of sea blue, with navy accents and a recoloured crest to match. Ultimately, the third kit features another unique wave design with three tiers creating a gradient from white to light sea blue, with navy shorts contrasting the white jersey and socks, and gold accents and detailing featuring too.
Glenburn Miners Welfare Athletic Football Club
Location: Prestwick Ground: Prestwick Academy Playing Fields
Glenburn Miners Welfare were founded in 1976, following the opening of the Glenburn Miners Welfare & Social Club the previous year in the Glenburn community of Prestwick. The clubs were created following the closure of the Glenburn mining pits in 1973, and the club's brand reflects that history and heritage. The current crest's colours and essence remain with an updated crest shape, mining lamp details and new modern feel in the signature blue and yellow colours. The home kit is typical of Glenburn's kits through their history as a yellow jersey, blue shorts and yellow socks - there is a unique sublimated design on the chest echoing the light effect from the lamp featured on the crest. This light effect is the hallmark of the secondary kit, with the colours emanating from the logo itself, with yellow accents throughout. The third kit takes inspiration from the mining pits themselves, with a 'blackout' effect reflecting the incredibly dark shades of the pits and the coal mined there, the kit also has a single diagonal pinstripe across the front, and a special blackout crest to match, with only the lamp's flame highlighted in yellow.
Prestwick Football Club
Location: Prestwick Ground: The Oval Playing Fields
Commonly known as Prestwick F.C. or simply Prestwick, the club is the youngest of the three in the league from Prestwick and they play their games at the central park in the town locally known as the Oval. Their crest shape reflects this location quite literally, with their primary style of blue and black vertical stripes shown in two different iterations of width at the top and bottom of the crest, with their name in an arch across the centre. The crest features two iconic Prestwick landmarks, at the top is a graphic representation of the oldest building of the town, the ruins of the old Saint Nicholas Church - with the bottom of the crest showing the war memorial to both world wars that rests in the centre of town at Prestwick Cross. For the home kit the classic blue and black stripes remain, with white details throughout and also an all white away kit to match which features a single vertical stripe on the right of the jersey. The third kit switches out the blue for red and features thinner vertical stripes than the home, with white accents and a recoloured crest to match.
Valspar Football Club
Location: Ayr Ground: King George V Playing Fields
Coming back to Ayr for our last team we have Valspar FC, founded in 1976 the club has well-established itself over the years as one of the most successful youth football clubs in the area. In terms of the club’s identity they have always stayed true to their official colours of red, white and black, with their original crest featuring vertical stripes, a prominent ‘V’ in the centre and a silhouette of the liver bird in black, taken from the crest of Liverpool to honour the connection to club founder Jim Gourlay who was a Liverpool scout for many years. For the new crest I have placed emphasis on the ‘V’ taking this as a base, and building the crest around it. The red and white vertical stripes stay, as does the liver bird in an updated style, the year of founding at the top, and the club’s name proudly displayed in a banner across the front. The kits have also remained the same through time with red and white vertical stripes and black accents, I have kept that traditional home look in place, with the away and third kits also staying true to the colour scheme, a black and red secondary with a sash design across the front and an all-white third kit with a red chevron across the chest. The third kit also features a minimalist version of the crest, using only the liver bird on the kit.
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