There comes a time in every soccer player's life when they walk onto the pitch for the final time.
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While Michael Lewis knows this is the reality of life, he is hoping to help extend those playing careers a little bit longer.
Currently plying his trade for Barnstoneworth United in the Orange and District Football Association, Lewis can be easily recognised by the smile on his face when he's got the boots strapped on. But next season, he will be flying a different flag, that of Dog FC.
"What I wanted to do was come up with a new initiative called 'safe soccer' which would either retain players that are going to retire or attract players who didn't want to join a competitive league," he said.
"I've been kicking this idea around for about three years, watching some good friends retire because they're scared of getting injured.
"There's a lot of fair challenges in 11-a-side soccer which can take its toll on older players. This team would seek to encourage people to stay in the game longer or at least try it."
The competition would run on Friday nights during the winter season.
There would be a limit of roughly 36 players who every week would mix and mash into two teams to then compete in an 11-a-side match.
"It would be a fun and friendly atmosphere to enjoy their game with some restrictive rules like no slide tackling," Lewis said.
"I think there is a subset of people who just want to enjoy their soccer and extend their playing career a little bit longer who are in it for fun.
"I took the initiative to the ODFA and I didn't want the Barnies verses Waratahs history or anything like that, so a brand new club and that's where Dog FC came in. We're going to be a non-competitive club, so no enemies to make."
With registrations to take place in the new year, Lewis emphasised this wasn't just a league for men either.
"There's plenty of women who play the seven-a-side and don't convert to the 11-a-side, so I wanted to give them the chance to play," he added.
"When I originally came up with the idea I thought I would be lucky to get 15 players. Now I think those 36 are going to fill up quite quickly.
"I've played with probably every team in Orange, so it would be really great if I got on board lots of people from lots of clubs."
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