Wales manager Jayne Ludlow (left) with young footballers who will benefit from the partnership; Mel Tuckwell (second from right), USW lecturer in Sports Coaching and Performance, and Claire O’Sullivan, Head Coach of the Wales Elite Youth Football Academy at Coleg y Cymoedd (right).
Wales Women’s football team manager Jayne Ludlow joined young players at the launch of a sponsorship deal aimed at supporting their development.
The former Wales and Arsenal player was at the University of South Wales (USW) Sport Park in Treforest as sponsored shirts were handed over to members of the Coleg y Cymoedd Football Association of Wales (FAW) Girls U19 football team.
The FAW teamed up with Ystrad Mynach-based Coleg y Cymoedd in 2015 to launch an elite female football academy, with the aim of helping the young players move up the ranks.
The sponsorship aims to develop the players further, with support coming from the USW Sport specialists and through use of the facilities at the Sport Park, and with USW’s logo also included on the team’s shirts.
The partnership will help to cement a newly-developed pathway for the students, which aims to support them as they improve their football skills, while also studying for qualifications at Coleg y Cymoedd and then progressing to study for degrees at USW.
As well as supporting the FAW team’s development through the football pathway, USW has also established a Women Sport Advisory Board to provide strategic and practical advice to improve the delivery, recognition, promotion and development of participation, performance and leadership opportunities for women sport in the region.
The Board will serve the sporting community at the grassroots level to ‘take the pulse’ of community sentiment in women’s participation in sport in the region, and also help to raise the profile of women’s sport and explore the issue of gender equality in sport in the region.