Accessibility of womens football

Last updated : 04 June 2013 By DSG

Nobody can deny that we are in an age where the stars of our national sport are mollycoddled by their clubs, with player accessibility limited to the odd community event.

I was pleasantly surprised however, by the access fans had to players when I went to report on my first couple of women's games recently.

On both my visits to watch Arsenal Ladies, against Birmingham City and Bristol Academy, the players seemed more than willing, both before and after each match, to sign autographs for youngsters and have a chat with more senior supporters.

It wasn't only those on the pitch either, coaching staff appeared gain for a discussion as their team warmed up, while I also noticed players not part of the match-day squad milling about between fans.

Imagine that, Premier League players missing through injury or suspension stopping to talk to supporters, or in fact, even being in the vicinity of supporters to begin with.

Having only ever reported on male contests, it was somewhat unusual to find that those sitting around me in the stand could easily gain as much access as I could to those in the thick of the action.

I could not help but notice however, the positive atmosphere created as a result. During the games there were the obligatory jeers for moments of poor play, but they were occasional, and in the main, there was a real willingness from fans to encourage the players.

Certainly, it was an environment that I had not before experienced as a reporter, or a supporter for that matter, at any male games I had ever attended.

With those initial experiences I have had of the female game, it has struck me that it is not only growing because of the Olympics, as is so often cited as the primary contributing factor.

I would therefore implore you to, at some point soon, when you find yourself moaning that you're having to watch the rugby perhaps, get yourself to a game. An adult ticket only costs ?5 or ?6.

What's more, if you can get over your vehement denial that the women's game is lacking in quality (anyone who says it is has not given it a proper chance), you can purchase a season ticket for the price of a Premier League match-day ticket.

I was no advocate of the women's game before the two games I watched, and if someone had told me I would enjoy it as much as I did I would definitely have doubted them, probably as you are doubting me now.

So, why not give it a go?

Source: DSG

Source: DSG