Female Football in Wales grows by 50% in three years
Women and Girls
4 March 2020

Female Football in Wales grows by 50% in three years

Female Football in Wales has grown rapidly in the last three years. 

The latest figures show a 50% rise in participation since 2016, with 8,600 women and girls now signed-up to football clubs in Wales.

To accelerate this growth further, we're expanding our popular Huddle programme to attract more 5 to 12-year-old girls into the game. 

Launched last year, Huddle aims to bridge the gap and support the transition between school and club football.

With the focus on fun and friendship, more than 400 girls enjoyed the sessions in 2019. And, with at least 20 new sites coming on board in April, we hope that figure will double in 2020.

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT ALL ABOUT HUDDLE

FAW Trust CEO Caroline Spanton said: “Research tells us that girls are more likely to be less confident than boys when joining a sports club.

"So Huddle is designed to give girls the opportunity to develop their skills and their confidence in a fun and sociable environment with their friends.

“We’re really pleased with the progress to date and it is a huge testament to the work of coaches, clubs, volunteers, leagues and all our other partners who are providing more and more opportunities for women and girls every year.

"To reach our target, we know we need to do things differently which is why we are taking new approaches.”

As well as the Huddle initiative, we have several programmes in place in order to achieve the ambitious goal of 20,000 registered female players by 2024.

These include McDonald's Fun Football sessions , Rainbows, Brownies and Guides initiatives, as well as a secondary school programme, which will launch in June 2020.

Wales star Rhiannon Roberts said: “The growth in the number of women and girls playing football is great news for the country. Not only will it help inspire players of the future at the elite level but it also helps improve the health and wellbeing of people in Wales.

“I recently visited Huddle events in Penrhyn Bay and Buckley and it was great seeing so many young girls enjoying playing football with their friends in such an inclusive and fun environment.”

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In just three seasons, the number of girls playing for Buckley Town Football Club has “exploded”, according its long-standing secretary Emma Iball.

With around 70 girls on its books, the club has been highlighted by the FAW Trust as one of the best examples in Wales of delivering opportunities in the female game.

With plans to develop younger teams and a senior ladies’ team, the club is thriving:

“I’m so proud of what we have achieved,” says Emma. “It’s amazing to see the smiles on their faces when they are playing. We’re building something for the whole community because providing these opportunities helps to develop confidence and friendship.

“Girls football has a bright future in the area,” she adds. “The local clubs all help each other and we get great support from the League and from FAW Trust.”

CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT FEMALE FOOTBALL IN WALES