Thousands of young women and girls from across the country will have the opportunity to follow in the footsteps of the Lionesses, following an expansion of a programme between the EFL Trust and The FA.
The programme aims to create a pathway for young women and girls from local communities, no matter what their background, to full England Women’s honours with EFL Clubs encouraged to develop tailored activity based on their local area. Those that show promise can then be referred into The FA Women’s England Talent Pathway and their progress will be monitored.
Nicol Meredith, Talent Inclusion Project Manager at the EFL Trust, said: “Following the success of the Lionesses at the European Championships this Summer, it is crucial that we continue developing and uncovering the hidden potential of female footballers. EFL Clubs are in the heart of their communities and are actively working areas that need the most help. The Talent Inclusion Programme provides young women and girls in those areas with an exciting opportunity and we are delighted that 54 EFL Clubs will now be part of the programme.”
In the last two years, 32 EFL Clubs who are already taking part in the programme have made 123 referrals to the FA Women’s England Talent Pathway:
Kay Cossington, The FA’s Head of Women’s Technical, said: “The expansion of this partnership with the EFL Trust is a crucial part of our strategic priority to ensure any girl from any social class, ethnicity and demographic gets an opportunity, the opportunity to develop her talent, to flourish and go as far as she can in the game.”
“Thanks to the EFL Trust’s support we now have 54 programmes with clubs in communities across England, allowing us to identify the best talent and place them on a pathway to nurture them, offering those good enough the chance to reach the highest level of the game and the ultimate dream of international honours. We know there is a lot more work to be done but we’re confident this will have a tangible impact on the game and the future of England teams.”
The EFL Clubs and their Club Community Organisations (CCOs) taking part in the programme will also be supported by a training and education programme managed by the EFL Trust and supported by The FA.