Initiative to give girls more opportunities to play regular football coming to WGC

PUBLISHED: 07:00 27 March 2018

The FA-led SSE Wildcats programme is coming to Welwyn Garden City.

The FA-led SSE Wildcats programme is coming to Welwyn Garden City.

Archant

A FA-led initiative to give girls more opportunities to play football is coming to Welwyn Garden City.

Sean Brettell in action for WGC. Picture: KEVIN LINESSean Brettell in action for WGC. Picture: KEVIN LINES

Herns Lane will be the venue for the SSE Wildcats Girls’ Football Centres from the FA which is open to girls aged between five and 11.

The initiative offers organised sessions in a fun and engaging environment created exclusively for girls.

More than 200 clubs were piloted across England in 2017 and the scheme is now being extended to more than 900 centres with 26,000 participants across the country.

The WGC centre will be run by Sean Brettell, a well-known figure at the Herns Lane-based club and the area assistant manager of Premier Education Group, along with Jason Coughlan.

Brettell said: “Between us we have a wealth of experience with over 24 years coach combined, we are both level two football coaches and have successfully ran a franchise of the biggest activity provider in the UK, for 16 years.

“WGC FC have supported us at Premier Education by providing the venue and helping support the initiative.

“This should in return help support children from WGC and Hatfield to be engaged in football.

“We are aware that there are local clubs that have girls teams and the popularity is slowly growing. Women’s football at a professional level is excelling beyond expectations, with England’s senior women’s team currently ranked third in the world.

“This is something we are proud and excited to be able to support and provide to girls in the Welwyn area.”

The sessions will take place for one hour from 11am every Sunday at Herns Lane between April 8 and June 24, with the exception of May 6 and 27.

It will cost £3 per child per session.

SSE and the FA hope the initiative will inspire participants to engage with football, meet new friends, develop fundamental skills, learn new things and create the foundation for a lifelong love of football.

But as well as activities for girls, there will also be opportunities for parents, carers and siblings, who may also be in attendance, to engage with the sport at the same time through family sessions including soccercise and walking football.

Kelly Simmons, FA participation and development director, said: “Since the launch of SSE Wildcats we have seen great enthusiasm from the girls taking part to continue learning and playing football.

“The centres have proved a huge success and we are pleased to be able to considerably grow the size of the initiative in 2018, offering a much higher percentage of girls across the country the opportunity to enjoy football in a safe and inspiring environment.”

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