Since the victory of the Lionesses in the Women’s EURO Championship, women’s football has rightfully been in the spotlight.
The women in the winning England squad have inspired younger generations of girls, won the hearts of the nation and brought football home.
So when could be a better time to support women’s football and where better to start than right here in Salisbury? Love Salisbury spoke to Salisbury FC’s Women’s Manager, Courtney Cassar, about how the community can support our local club.
Salisbury FC’s Women’s team started in November 2016, joining the Wiltshire Women’s Division 1 league for the inaugural season (2017/18). Despite being the newest club in the league, the team finished 5th out of 10 participating clubs.
The following season, (2018/19) the team pushed on finishing 2nd in the league
and were also runners-up in their first-ever cup final.
The club currently has over 40 girls signed on and since the success of the Lionesses, that figure keeps rising.
“I’m getting daily emails from girls expressing their interest in trialling for the team. There’s been a massive expansion. We’re trying to get younger girls in so we can funnel them into the women’s team or develop them and have them go elsewhere.
“It’s a work in progress that hopefully will be improved if we can get more interest from sponsors and coaches in particular,” explained Courtney.
Over the past few years, Courtney says there has been a lot of hard grafting to get the team off the ground.
“Mark Steele, our previous manager, is an amazing advocate for women’s football and I can’t celebrate him enough. He’s really fought to get us matches at the Ray Mac etc.
“This season, I would quite like the team to have a new kit and for it to be individual to them. I want players to have their initials and pick their numbers, just like the men’s team, because I want them to feel valued,” explained Courtney.
“What I’ve designed is player sponsorships to pay for the player’s registration fees, because obviously, we all work and everyone’s money is a bit tight at the moment with the cost of living. So if registration fees and kit are paid for by sponsors, we can then also have corporate sponsors for the bigger things such as training facilities or having their businesses advertised on our kit.
“We’ve had a lot of interest from potential sponsors it is just getting them over the line,” added Courtney.
For Courtney, support from sponsors and the local community would enable her to help unlock the potential within Salisbury FC’s Women’s team.
“I was captain last year and I’ve seen how the team has grown. I’ve put a lot of effort in, Mark’s put a lot of effort in and I just feel like they deserve it, especially after the Lionesses displayed what women’s football is capable of.
“For businesses to get involved in women’s football now is only going to display their support for something that’s growing and for grassroots and women’s football, especially in the local community.
“There’s huge amounts of potential in the team. There are enough players to support a development team and to set up different tiers of age groups for younger girls as well. It just all comes down to the support that we receive.
“If we receive that support there’s no end to what Salisbury women can do. It would mean the world to the team because we’ve been so dedicated and we love our team and we love playing for Salisbury.
“I love the girls and we are like a little mini family to be honest. So to have the support of the local community behind us would be amazing.”
To find out more about sponsoring the Salisbury FC Women or to express your interest email Courtney at Courtney@salisburyfc.co.uk. For the latest fixtures and updates, follow Salisbury FC Women on Facebook.