Loughborough Students Futsal Club are the dominant force British university futsal, and England's most prolific futsal development setup. The only institution with 3 BUCS futsal golds, having reached 4 out of the last 5 BUCS Championship finals, the Students Club are also the seed of Loughborough Futsal Club, competing at the top level of English futsal since the inception of the FA National Futsal League.
Futsal became part of Loughborough Football in the 2006/7 season under Head Coach Tom Curtis, Director of Football James Ellis and initial management of Idafe Perez. The first trophy came straight away, with the conquest of the Leicestershire League. That foundational year also saw Loughborough obtaining the bronze medal in a still unofficial national universities championship.2008 became key for the history of futsal in Loughborough. The first ever BUSA (now BUCS) Championship was appropriately played Where History Begins, at Loughborough. Although Loughborough only played thanks to a last hour invitation, the Scholars managed to win the first ever BUSA Futsal Gold after beating the favourites Teeside, in the semifinal, and the biggest football rivals of the time, Hartpury College, in a tense final that was resolved from the penalty spot. From 2009 futsal became part of Loughborough University FC, the elite programme of Loughborough Football. The Scholars made history, under management of current England manager Michael Skubala, taking part as foundational members of the FA National Futsal League, qualifying for the League Finals in 2009 and making it to the FA Futsal Cup Final in 2010.
Futsal gains its own identity
By the 2012/13 season, fundamental changes had taken place, with the consolidation of the Development Squad, created in the previous season, the return of Futsal to the umbrella of the Students’ Club and the expansion of the sport, investing a grant from the Small Sided Fund into the creation of Loughborough’s first IMS Futsal League which still runs to this day. 2012/13 BUCS season was a success for the club beating University of Brighton 1’s in the championship final 7-0. The 2’s also showed strong performances throughout the season and also won the BUCS Midlands 1A division. Loughborough Futsal also qualified for the Super League knockouts after finishing in a strong 3rd position in the midlands division however failed to make it past the group stages after suffering a defeat to the strongest team in the country, Baku United.By then, futsal had outstretched the fabrics of the football programme and a separate futsal specific Club was finally created, to accommodate the growing interest and booming success. During the 2013/14 season, Loughborough 1’s fell one game short of becoming the first team in the competitions history to win back to back BUCS Championship gold losing 5-4 on penalties to Brunel. The 2’s also made it to the Trophy final for the first time in the club's history but like the 1’s suffered defeat this time to Durham 1’s. Reflectively, the 2013/14 season in BUCS was a success all round. Loughborough Students Futsal also competed right to the end in the Superleague, reaching the Grand Finals day held at St. Georges Park, competing with Baku United, Manchester and Helvecia in the showdown of the top 4 teams in the country. The students then continued their fine form, making the semi-finals of the FA Futsal Cup held at the Copper Box Arena in London. See highlights from their semi-final game against Manchester Futsal here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9BuZ34vku4.
The 2014/15 saw further expansion of the club with the addition of the Freshers Team who were to compete in the BUCS Midlands 2A division as BUCS 3s. The 1’s went onto win the Premier Midlands division this year but were left disappointed after being knocked out in semi-finals of the BUCS championship losing to Brunel 1’s for the second successive year. The 2’s were also left underwhelmed with their performances finishing 3rd in the Midlands 1A and being knocked out in the 3rd round of the trophy. The disappointment of these results were the result of the high expectations placed upon the students as a result of their success over previous years. The 3’s were introduced into BUCS Futsal finishing 4th in their first year of university futsal. In the FA national futsal league the students were able to continue the previous year’s good form finishing 2nd in the Midlands division and yet again for the 3rd consecutive year qualified for the Super League. This time however, falling short of the grand finals.
The 2015/16 season was very constructive for the club. After changes in the club structure the student club reached a new agreement with the International Futsal Academy (IFA) allowing the BUCS side to benefit from IFA coaches as well as IFA players to play for the BUCS teams. The 3’s, which were mostly composed of first year futsal players, manage to come 3rd in the Midlands 2A and reach the second round of the Conference Cup. The 2s were runners up in the Midlands 1A and reached the second round of the BUCS Trophy getting knocked out by Northumbria’s 2’s away. The 1’s, after finishing 2nd in the Midlands Premier League (won by Nottingham Trent), managed to win their group in the Super 8’s beating Nottingham Trent in an incredible game coming back from 3-1 down with 5 minutes to play to win 6-4 and qualify for the BUCS Final against Northumbria 1’s. The Final, held a St. Georges Park, saw Northumbria leading 2-1 at HT but after some coaching changes the Loughborough boys managed to turn this around and win by an incredible 7-2. With this title, Loughborough became the most successful university futsal side in the country winning its third BUCS Gold and reaching the Final for the third time in 4 years.After this incredible season, in 2016/17 the club’s aim was to win BUCS again as well as reach the Super League grand finals. Like every year there were many players finishing their studies and thus many changes in the teams with a lot of new players. This has never stopped Loughborough from being competitive and the 3’s managed to comfortably win the Midlands 2A despite being knocked out of the Conference Cup in the first round. The 2’s which were composed entirely of IFA players went on to finish runners up of the Midlands 1A and reaching the fourth round of the BUSC Trophy. The BUCS 1’s started the season very well but after two away losses ended up finishing second for the second year in a row in the Midlands Premier League. Similarly to the previous season the boys qualified to the Super 8’s and managed to comfortably win their group securing a place in the BUCS Final for the fourth time in 5 years! The Final was held at the Copper Box down in London against Cardiff 1st team. Despite dominating the game the Loughborough side did not manage to make the difference and saw Cardiff win the Title on penalties (4-4 3-2).