A NEW task force is being launched in Greater Manchester to promote women’s and girls’ football across the city region, ahead of the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 kicking off next week.
The inaugural meeting of the Greater Manchester Women’s Football Board (GMWFB) took place today (Tuesday 28 June). The new group has been set up to develop women’s and girls’ football at all levels, from increasing participation at a grassroots level to supporting teams in the FA Women’s Football pyramid.
It will play an active role in supporting the game and developing players, identifying partnership and funding opportunities, and making recommendations on future facility plans across Greater Manchester.
The Board members will meet three times a year, with this first session coming just eight days before the first match kicks off in the UEFA Women’s Euro 2022, with England facing Austria at Old Trafford.
Three venues across Greater Manchester have been selected to host matches: Old Trafford, the Manchester City Academy Stadium, and Leigh Sports Village.
Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham said: “I am immensely proud to be a part of this first-ever Greater Manchester Women’s Football Board, supporting the game at all levels in our city region.
“We know that the Euros and the journey of the Lionesses will inspire people up and down the country, and women and girls might want to take up the game for the first time or lace up their boots again after some time away. We want to make sure that everyone has those opportunities to access great community facilities, that the funding is there to support the growth of the game, and that they can enjoy the best possible coaching and development to reach the highest levels.”
Baroness Sue Campbell, Director of Women’s Football at the FA, said: “With the record-breaking UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 kicking off at Old Trafford next week, we couldn’t be more excited to be a part of the first Greater Manchester Women’s Football Board. Planning for the legacy of this tournament started over two years ago and thanks to the exceptional work of our Host City stakeholders in Wigan and Leigh, Manchester and Trafford, we know that women and girls of all ages will now be able to access football opportunities for the first time.
“We now want to extend this great work across all ten boroughs within Greater Manchester and collectively grow both the grassroots and professional women’s game; increase the number of female coaches, referees and volunteers in the game and align future facility planning. Having three of our nine Host Cities within Greater Manchester this summer gives us a great platform to build from.”
The GMCA will act as the secretariat for the GMWFB, and the Board will report to the GMCA and The FA.
The GMWFB members are:
Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA)
Greater Manchester Moving
Bright Futures Educational Trust
Manchester Football Association
The Football Association
Youth Player representative
UEFA Women’s EURO 2022 Host City Legacy Lead