The Cup runs across six weekends in September, October and November, and enables players aged six to 20 to keep scoring long after the winter season has ended.

Although the Cup is wholly internal, manager Rosie Clark describes it as containing an important combination of both “didactic and competitive” elements.

“The Cup ensures that players don’t lose their sense of the match,” she says.

“The season is relatively short and the Cup continues to develop team skills after it’s over.

“Coaches can stop play where necessary and explain without pressure the field positions and different ways of touching the ball.” 

Teams are coached by Andrea Icardi, who first started playing at ten years old with A.C. Milan and went on to spend 13 years with this club, now the most titled in the world.

Aspiring young players have to be 100 per cent committed to football to make it.

“There’s a statistic in Italy which says that 1/400,000 players will make it big,” Rosie says.

“We train players to be competitive, so that they can live their dream.”