WSL goes full-time
The restructured FA Women’s Super League will kick-off a historic season on Sunday 9 September when it becomes fully professional for the first time.
The restructure of the top-flight of women’s football has included new licensing criteria for the eleven sides competing in The FA WSL, including all players throughout the league becoming full-time.
It is a milestone for women’s football in Europe and The FA’s delivery of 'The Gameplan for Growth' which is aiming to double participation and the fanbase of the women’s game by 2020.
The league starts at 12.30pm on Sunday as Arsenal go head-to-head against Liverpool on the BBC Sport website. At 2pm, last year’s FA WSL and SSE Women’s FA Cup winners Chelsea take on Manchester City live on BT Sport 3.
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Matches will be broadcast throughout the season on BT Sport, BBC and The FA WSL Facebook page.
To celebrate the start of the new FA WSL season and a landmark moment for women’s football, The FA has created a film that highlights its impact on a generation of girls who can now aspire to have a career in women’s football. Aspiring young footballers feature in the 60-second video alongside stars of the women’s game.
The FA’s director of the women’s professional game, Kelly Simmons, said: “The start of a new fully professional top tier is a landmark moment for women’s football and integral to the future growth of the game, on and off of the pitch.
“It is my hope that the move will launch domestic women’s football into becoming a mainstream sport, that millions of people up and down the country are connected with week in, week out.”
Fahren, 12, who stars in the film said: “I think the new FA WSL is really important and I loved being in the video. It means me and my friends can now dream of playing in a professional league, just like all of the boys our age who love football.”
The launch of the new look FA WSL coincides with the unveiling of The FA WSL Academy programme, geared towards balancing a young female player’s football development with their educational aspirations.
With the performance services of physical preparation, physiotherapy and lifestyle provision facilitated by the Talented Athlete Scholarship Scheme [TASS] in Higher Education locations, the Academy programme will support over 200 players aged 16-20.