About North West Counties Football League
When it comes to football in England, the United Kingdom and even the world in general, the English Premier League (EPL) dominates the headlines. After all, the league is arguably the most exciting around. However, the English football system consists of more than just the EPL –there is a whole thriving ecosystem of football leagues at the lower levels, comprising of the Football League System (Tier 1 to 4) and National League System (Tier 5 to 11).
New Mills A.F.C. currently plays in the tenth tier of the English football national league system. Theoretically, the club can gradually go up the tiers all the way up to the EPL. To give you an idea of where the club stands now relative to the league system, we’ve compiled a brief overview of the entire league structure.
- Tier 1 : Known as the Premier League since 1992, and prior to that, First Division, the league consists of 20 teams, and the bottom three teams are relegated into Tier 2 each season.
- Tier 2 : The Championship consists of 24 teams. The top three teams are promoted to Tier 1 while the bottom three teams are demoted to Tier 3 every season.
- Tier 3 : League One also consists of 24 teams, and follows a similar promotion and relegation format as Tier 2.
- Tier 4 : League 2 is the lowest level of fully professional clubs. 24 teams compete for up to four promotion slots to Tier 3 while the two lowest ranked teams are demoted to the National League.
- Tier 5 : Formerly known as Conference National, the champions of the National League are automatically promoted to Tier 4 while teams ranked between second and seventh battle it out for another promotion spot.
- Tier 6 : The sixth tier comprises of 44 teams playing in the National League North and National League South.
- Tier 7 : The Northern Premier League, Southern League and Isthmian League make up the seventh tier of the English football system.
- Tier 8 : 88 teams compete in the Isthmian League Premier Division, Northern Premier League Premier Division, Southern Football League Central Division and Southern Football League South Division for a chance to ascend to Tier 7.
- Tier 9 : 60 teams plays in the Premier Division, Northern Premier League Division One North, and Northern Premier League Division One South which represents the ninth tier of the football league.
- Tier 10 : This is where The Millers currently resides. More specifically, The Millers play in the Division One South of the North West Counties Football League (officially known as the Hallmark Security League until 2020). The tier also includes Southern Football League Division One East, Southern Football League Division One West, Isthmian League Division One South Central, Isthmian League Division One North, and Isthmian League Division One South East.
- Tier 11 : The final tier consists of feeder clubs, a loose association of amateur clubs which currently numbers around 350.
So now that you have a clearer picture of the league ecosystem, isn’t it easier to throw your weight behind The Millers? After all, we could potentially land in the EPL as early as 2028! Hope springs eternal!