Local teenagers will have an opportunity to display their soccer skills at a higher level. It has been proposed that they be allowed to take part in a new league comprising the Under-17 teams of First Division clubs in Hong Kong. The news comes as a boost for teenage players looking for competition outside their schools. Normally, First Division clubs nominate players for their Reserve Division and youth league (Under-19), but this is the first time that an Under-17 competition will be held. The competition has not been rubber-stamped yet although the Hong Kong Football Association (HKFA) is expected to give it the green light at a committee meeting next month. Jackson Yu Chik-sum, the acting HKFA general-secretary, said the proposal would allow more youngsters to represent well-known clubs. 'There are lots of competitions like this in Europe and it's high time that we had one where younger footballers can join in and compete while representing good professional clubs,' he said. Meanwhile, the McDonald's Star Programme - Youth Football Scheme 98 will kick off today, backed by local professional footballers. More than 3,000 youngsters aged six to 18 will participate in the inter-district competition starting today. Footballers from First Division giants South China and Rangers will attend the kick-off ceremony and play an exhibition match. A similar fixture between youth teams from the two clubs is also scheduled. The festivities will be held at the Lok Fu Recreation Ground near the Lok Fu MTR station starting at 3 pm.