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St Albans Football Academy 

For The Elite

Following 12 successful years as Oaklands College's primary Football Academy, St Albans City FC has joined forces with Oaklands Wolves to form Oaklands Wolves (SAFA) Football Academy.



Former professional footballer and academy Manager Steve Castle heads up a coaching staff of FA Licensed, UEFA A and UEFA B qualified coaches.

To ensure you develop to the best of your ability our coaches deliver a minimum of:

  • 16 hours of coaching each week
  • A detailed programme for each player that incorporates the FA's 4 Corner Model in order to develop a player's individual technical/tactical, psychological, social and physical needs.
  • Individual 1 to 1 sessions are provided by way of a performance clock detailing every element of the player's football requirements
  • A position specific pathway is created between player and coach

Introducing Our Latest Elite Academy Training Coach

With a lifelong dedication to Football from professional to amateur levels Steve Castle has expected nothing less than 100% from his players as well as his own coaching.  Playing football himself for over 19 years he understands the game from the player’s perspective and uses this knowledge to coach footballers to their highest potential.

Highlights as a professional Footballer:

Played for teams such as Birmingham City FC, Plymouth Argyle FC and Leyton Orient FC

With a large repertoire of Footballing qualifications and experience Steve Castle’s understanding off the pitch is also very impressive. The past 11 years of coaching has seen him become a fully licenced UEFA “A” Football Coach and be UEFA “B” and FA Level 2 Certified. He has been consistently successful in managing winning teams and coached professional and academy clubs, expanding their knowledge of the game and developing their techniques. He guided his current team, Royston Town FC, to the 2016/17 league title with four games to spare. His side had won 25 of their 26 games, bettering their league runners-up finish in both 2014/15 and 2015/16 campaigns

Highlights as a High Level Manager and Coach:

Manager for Takeley FC, Head coach at Stevenage FC and Football Coach for West Ham United Academy (Under 13’s).

Being a scout for teams as high as FA England Under 16’s – 19’s has taught him what top teams are looking for in their players and what skills players need to become the best.

We look forward to Steve joining the Wolf Pack and having him take the elite team to new levels!



The Academy operates three teams based upon ability levels:




These teams have a two way pathway depending on each individual's needs and on their development as a player. The teams compete in the English Colleges Football Association (ECFA).

player outline
Our programmes are devised by professionally licensed coaches who work with you to a high standard to ensure you develop the technical and practical skills required for players to become the best they can.

player growth
Each player will gain experience in their positions and develop skills to improve their overall game including: tactics, physical strength and technical abilities

Training Equipment
The best players need top training equipment to become the best they can be. Our SAFA football players players can expect to train in facilities they deserve. 

game play pitch

Players will get the chance to put their skills to the test in league and cup competitions.
These matches will give the players a competitive opportunity to showcase their skills.

football health
Player safety and wellbeing is of upmost concern. Our team are there to help you with physical ailments and also psychological and academic. 

football exposure
Our players develop skills and get scouted for professional and semi professional clubs. 


students at study

The scheme offers genuine opportunities for individuals to achieve their full potential as a footballer whilst continuing o study a broad range of courses on offer by the College.

It is possible to study most courses when you become a SAFA Academy player:  


Trophy stock image

The Academy has a proven pathway for progression into the professional game, boasting a Youth International as a former Academy graduate, as well as extensive contacts and links to professional clubs and their Academies. The link with St Albans City Football Club, Royston Town and other semi-professional clubs has also seen numerous players play at the top end of the semi-professional, non-league pyramid.

Football Trials with SAFA

Below our our latest football trials. If we don't have any currently running please feel free to email us and we'll let you know when the next trial is. 

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