MALVERN side Express Falcons have teamed up with youth outfit Leigh and Bransford Badgers to create a pathway into adult Sunday league football for local players.

The aim of both clubs is to encourage over 16s to continue playing once they pass out of youth age groups.

Falcons, founded in 2000, play in McDonald's Worcester and District Sunday League Division One with home games at Lower Howsell Road.

The club have actively encouraged local youngsters to join their ranks over the past few years and the new arrangement will provide a firmer pathway.

“This is a great opportunity for players who come through our age groups to experience adult Sunday league football at a club that shares our outlook and ethos and have recently achieved charter standard status,” said Badgers chairman Simon Secretan.

“The two clubs will continue to stand alone but with a shared working partnership solely focused on keeping players that come through our club playing football when they reach 16 and over."

Falcons chairman Jon Hale said: “We are delighted to be partnering with the Badgers who are a progressive, inclusive club with fantastic core values and we’ll be delighted to welcome their young players into our club.

"We’ve a history of helping former youth players to feel comfortable in adult football.

"This partnership will open up all sorts of avenues for us as a club, including the potential for shared training facilities, coach and player progression, while also supporting each other's events.

"It will be of great benefit to share knowledge and experience between us while both retaining our independence to concentrate on what we do best. With the Badgers it's youth football, with the Falcons it's adult Sunday league."

The partnership starts immediately and will be ratified by the FA in due course.