Murray United is in danger of not stepping out on the field in 2020.
The Border NPL 3 outfit has put out an urgent call to youth players across the region to join their under-18 and under-20 squads.
Murray currently requires 10 to 15 players in those age groups in order to maintain its senior status.
The club is also seeking accredited C License coaches to join the senior coaching group.
Murray United chairman Darren Yates confirmed the news that the seniors, under 20s and under 18s are at risk of not proceeding this season unless there is immediate improvement in player numbers at training and two new coaches commit to the club.
"We require another 10 to 15 players born between 2000 to 2003 to be able to proceed with under-18s and under-20s teams this season. Our senior NPL license requires us to field an under-18 and an under-20 team," Yates said.
"We held a meeting on Wednesday evening with advanced coaches in the region who are supporters of the Victorian NPL pathway.
"There was a lot of support for NPL senior football from within the group, however we are still are unable to fill the coaching positions with coaches who fit our values and expectations.
"We require one or two advanced coaches to join our senior program, as well as more young players."
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Yates said the club has been working hard in recent months since appointing new senior coach Igor Srbinovski, but admitted playing numbers have been an issue throughout the pre-season.
"We are fighting a strong national and state trend where players, coaches and volunteers in regional areas are not prepared to put in the time required to compete at senior level," Yates added.
"There have been similar scenarios at Bendigo, Cairns, Townsville and more recently Griffith where existing senior NPL franchises have been unable to continue with their senior NPL programs.
"The majority of players that come through our juniors tend to leave the region during this age bracket whilst others become very focused on their studies, commence employment and increase their social activities. This leaves a very small pool of players wanting to commit to this level considering our geographical challenges."
Yates said the board will weigh up State League if NPL 3 requirements can't be met.
However, Yates stressed the current situation has no impact on the club's junior program, which will proceed for under-12s through to under-16s.
"The depth and quality of our junior squads with players and coaches is stronger than ever," he said.
"There is quite a contrast at the moment between our seniors and juniors, which is perhaps a sign of the times.
"Our club strategy and purpose is to produce future Socceroos and Matildas, which we are having quite some success with Alec Mills, Linus Bourke, Ryan Kemp and Amelia Yates all going on to play at A-League clubs or Victoria NTC."
Senior coach Igor Srbinovski reinforced the platform Murray provides.
"This is an opportunity for the region's talented youth to not only test themselves against the best, but gain national spotlight and the chance to be scouted internationally," he said.
"I've only been here a short time, but the potential I have seen in the local youth is tremendous and they deserve this opportunity to play NPL football. I have a clear message to all players in the region, if you have the desire to challenge yourself and possibly make a career out of football, then this is your chance to have a go and get to training."
Players born between 2000 and 2003 interested in taking up the opportunity to play NPL 3 and accredited coaches keen on working at NPL level should contact Igor Srbinovski on 0432 622 022 or email@example.com.