Women's team makes competitive debut
A WOMEN'S sports team has started their first season of league football after a helping hand from The National Lottery.
Nairn Ladies Football Club (NLFC) was awarded £4890 from Awards for All Scotland, distributed by sportscotland, one of 204 physical activity projects sharing £1.5m of National Lottery good cause funding.
NLFC used the money to help fund the team’s debut season in the Highlands and Islands League, with plans also in place to expand the club’s youth section which is open to girls from primary 3-7.
Club founder, secretary, treasurer and player Deanna Lundie created the club in 2016 due to a lack of women’s football in the area. She now has a squad of 20 players and a youth section, coached by players in the ladies team.
And after nearly two years of friendlies,the full team has made its Scottish Cup debut.
Black Isle Active Schools coordinator confirmed the lottery funding came at just the right time to help the club progress
She said: "We’ve got more equipment now for the youth section. For away games we usually hire a mini bus from our community centre, there’s games in Caithness, Buckie, Inverness and we’ll be playing against Lewis and Harris and Kirkwall which is quite a big journey for us.
"We also want to enter the youth section in some festivals soon so they can play four and five-a-side games, to give them a bit of experience instead of just playing training sessions all the time."
Women’s football continues to increase in popularity across Scotland and that trend looks set to continue on the back of the national team qualifying for the World Cup for the first time.
Deanna said: "It will encourage more girls to take an interest in football. Women’s football is promoted so much more now, you see it all over social media and on TV. It is becoming more recognised. Especially with the younger generation to be able to see the recognition the women’s game is getting."