The Dubai Amateur Football League is a culturally inclusive, social but competitive amateur 11 a side football league, played on full sized pitches in the Emirate of Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The largest amateur football league in the Middle East with over 1200 players and in excess of 50 teams, the league provides an opportunity for residents of the UAE with a wide variety of footballing abilities, to play in an organised and structured format.
Operating for over 30 years, the league finds it’s original roots dating back to sand pitches owned by the Creek, on what was later to become part of the Dubai Exiles Rugby Club site at Al Awir.
Significantly, over three decades later ‘The Creek’ have maintained a presence as a league team (Autotrader Creek) and are one of the few last remaining ever presents of the league as of 2016.
For many years, the league consisted of a small number of mainly british expatriate teams, which played on a fairly informal basis. A league format was introduced by the year 2000, but still consisted of only 8 teams and was played in a short season, 7 a side format.
From 2001, 11 a side games were introduced as numbers increased and formed as the ‘Dubai Expat League’. The name was formally changed to The Dubai Amateur Football League in 2006, to reflect the culturally inclusive ethos of the league, with players of over 80 nationalities participating, which includes a number of Emirati amateur players.
The league is proud to be a crosser of cultural divides and encourages people of all nationalities, ethnicities and backgrounds to come together for the shared love of football. The league places high values in fairness, equality and safety for all teams and players.
For the current 2016/17 season, the league again welcomes over 50 teams, which play in 4 regular divisions and the dedicated Veterans Over 35s division. Whilst the vast majority of the participating teams comprise of adults over 18, recent seasons have saw participation from a small but growing number of youth based teams, with players as young as 14 competing. Youth based teams currently competing in the DAFL include; UAE Precor, Adastra Dubai FC, Alliance FC, Go Pro Sports and It's Just Football.
DAFL sees over 1200 players playing over the winter 11 a side season, which starts as the summer heat begins to relent at the end of September, through to the following May.
The league operates with games played across a number of facilities in and around Dubai, which include; The Sevens, Jebel Ali Shooting Club and Dubai Sports City. Games are played in the evenings, between Sunday and Wednesday each week, with Kick Offs usually at 8.45pm.