Who would have thought that Footy in summer would be so popular?

Over the last few months, the recently formed MPJFL Academy has gotten underway in style, with the commencement of the Under 13 Boys and Under 13/14s Girls Summer Programs.

The Academy was formed at the back end of this year, after sitting in the pipeline for several seasons. President and Development Manager Andrew Souter wanted to launch the academy to expand on the development opportunities the league could offer, as well as to enhance the current programs with the inclusion of expertise.

“The Academy has started exactly the way we would’ve liked” Andrew said. “The interest from the participants has been great and the specialist coaches have added a layer to the programs that we haven’t seen before”.

Session #2 with Tackling and contact expert Malcolm Bangs

Both male and female programs begun with a specialist coaching session run by our program collaborators Footy Fast Tracker, spearheaded by extremely well credentialed coaches Rick Legassick and Paul Hudson. Footy Fast Tracker also returned for the third session and will be involved in the programs after Christmas Break.

Rick and Paul have been active in the Academy planning and offer a level of expertise that is sure to play a pivotal role in the development of our players and coaches.

Malcolm Bangs, expert in all things Tackling and Contact, ran session number 2 and as always was a huge hit with the players and the parents.

The Dandenong Stingrays held the last training session for the year, in what was a great finish to the 2021 Academy Calendar. The Stingrays are our talent pathway club for this region, and it is great to have them on board, actively involved in producing the next crop of stars from the MPJFL.

As well as the specialist coaches that have become a part of our program, we are lucky to have several coaches from within our league that have shown dedication and commitment to the development of our players, and to the growth of the Academy.

Marc Bressan (Mt Martha) has been instrumental in the planning and facilitation of the female interleague and academy teams, with interest and engagement at an all-time high for these programs. It’s an exciting time for female football within the MPJFL, and it will be great to watch the development of the girls currently in the programs as we head into next year.

Fresh off being awarded coach of the year in their respective age groups, Jim Scown (Tyabb) and Jamie Mcpherson (Rye) are also playing a huge role in the delivery of the Academy Programs.

Our Under 13/14 Girls Squad with Paul Hudson & Rick Legassick (Footy Fast Tracker)

Senior Vice President and League Coach Co-ordinator Paul Lonsdale has praised these coaches for their efforts in developing our participants, and for their interest in self-improvement.

“Its exciting to see coaches from within our own league seeking opportunities to grow within our Academy, and to then take their learnings back to their clubs and their teams” Paul said.


“Coaching is one of the core components of the league and the growth of the Academy in 2022 will look to focus on coaching and important it is at club land” he added.


In more exciting news, the MPJFL will be hosting specialist nights for this years Under 12 Girls in the new year, which will be the first time that there has been development opportunities facilitated for this specific age group.


The Academy will recommence in the new year with the following programs:


  • Under 13 Boys Summer Program (cont)
  • Under 13/14 Girls Summer Program (cont)
  • MPJFL 2022 Tasmania Tour Trial (Under 16 Boys & Under 15-18 Girls)
  • Under 12 Girls Specialist Coaching
  • Coaching Development Sessions


  • 2022 Interleague Trials


Stay tuned for more information regarding the above programs early in the new year!