Two of East Kilbride’s oldest and most established clubs have this week announced they are merging in a move that creates a player pathway for all levels of football in the town.
EKYC and EKYM, who are both SFA Standard Quality mark clubs, are pulling together all their resources to launch a new community club in the town. It will be known as East Kilbride Youth and Men’s Club (EKYMC).
However, both clubs are to retain their separate identities on the field, while complementing and working with each other off of it, to ensure security and a stronger future.
All their young footballers will play under the auspices of EKYC and adult players (those over 17) will play under the auspices of EKYM.
It is proposed that the young adult squads within the YC, including the managers, would develop and join YM as their “youth teams” as under-17 and -19 teams, with the help of the existing EKYC coaches.
EKYM’s development squads, with players born in 2007 and 2008, will move across to the YC.
Martin Ross, YM’s development officer, will now perform a similar role at the YC.
EKYM and EKYC are two of the oldest football clubs in East Kilbride with the YM forming in 1936 and YC incepted in 1969.
But the chairmen of both clubs are delighted to secure this partnership and ensure the clubs go from strength to strength.
YM chairman Allan Cunningham told the News: “EKYM are delighted to be able to form this partnership with EKYC, who are a fantastic club.
“This gives us all a real opportunity to have a football pathway, and allow us to develop our own players, without either club losing identity or their history.
“We feel that together, we can be bigger and stronger, ensuring the long-term future for both clubs.”
YC chairman Dennis Byrne added: “EKYC view this partnership as being mutually beneficial to both clubs as it provides a football pathway for any four- to five-year-old children into adult football.”
Currently, EKYM have three adult amateur teams playing in the most highly regarded amateur leagues in Scotland.
They also run an “Old Crocks team” for over-35s as well as a development scheme for boys and girls born in 2007 and 2008.
Meanwhile, YC have youth teams playing at all age groups from five-years-old to 19-years-old and have recently achieved the SFA Quality Mark.
The existing clubs will retain their own identity. However, the new set-up will see both teams playing in the same colours and training together.
From now on both YC and YM teams will don yellow and navy strips.
A combined committee will be set up under the name EKYMC, allowing them to create opportunities for the community and both clubs.
Anyone interested in joining the new set-up or learning more about EKYMC should email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.