School Hosts First Girls' Football Festival
Wednesday, 24 April 2013
Bolton School hosted its first festival of girls’ football, in association with the Independent Schools Football Association.
The competition was for Year 7 and 8 pupils and the tournament ran as a league with eight teams from the Essa Academy, Liverpool College, Grammar School at Leeds (GSAL), Canon Slade and Bolton School taking part. Several schools entered two teams.
Bolton School Girls’ Coach, Miss Lauren Reynolds, said: “All teams played with enthusiasm and represented their schools with pride, proving that girls’ football is a growing sport. The girls have so much energy and passion for the sport and as we recognise the demand is increasing, we hope to provide the necessary opportunities.”
After all the games had been played, GSAL and Liverpool College were tied on points and as GSAL had beaten Liverpool College earlier in the day, they were crowned Bolton School’s ISFA girls’ football tournament champions of 2013.
The profile of women’s football in general is increasing in the wake of the recent Women’s World Cup and the introduction of the new Women’s Super League. This greater interest has led to a demand from girls in independent schools to play football, which the schools are now meeting. Earlier in the year, Year 7 and 8 pupils at Bolton School Girls’ Division were given the opportunity to take part in the Girls’ Football Development Programme, which provided them with the opportunity of being coached by a fully qualified football coach from Bolton Wanderers FC. The Independent Schools Football Association has expanded its girls’ football programme in recent years with initiatives including the ISFA Girls' U18 Cup, and inter-regional representative teams for outstanding players, with the aim of creating national representative sides.