She’s a Star – Wigan Athletics Ladies
Wigan Athletic Ladies Football Club provides coaching for girls and women where they learn to play football and participate in local leagues. This Sunday their first team will be playing Burnley Ladies in the 2nd Qualifying Road of the Women’s FA Cup.
Originally set up in 1999 as Wigan Latics to give girls in the Wigan area somewhere to play competitive league football for the first time, the Club grew and developed so greatly that they approached Wigan Athletic and were confirmed as a link to the town’s successful football club in the 2003/4 season. The girls now play in Wigan Athletic’s kit, which boosts aspirations massively amongst the players.
Now with 10 teams of differing ages, the Club is growing in popularity more and more every year. New teams are added every year and have links with local schools, the Wigan Youth Zone, the Wigan Athletic Community Trust, Wigan Athletic FC, The Lancashire FA and other local football leagues and clubs.
Following the success of England Ladies football team in the 2015 World Cup, football is now the most popular sport for young girls to get involved in.
Football creates great team work and encourages physical activity and fitness among young people. With the high quality expected by the Club, the young people are encouraged to keep a healthy diet and are taught how to do this too.
As well as coaching young girls, the club gives parents and players the opportunity to further their careers by offering them coaching courses at various levels including; First Aid, Child Protection, Groundskeeping, Refereeing and Child Welfare. These courses have helped numerous players and managers progress into voluntary and full-time paid jobs whilst still coaching at the club.
Younger members have also been able to take part in refereeing courses. Getting young girls involved in refereeing from a young age puts them on a positive path. Refereeing is something they could pursue as a career, not only for Wigan Athletic Ladies, but for other clubs too. This encouragement has also led to a lot of young girls from the club studying sport-related subjects at college and University.
To add a bit of Mancunian flavour to these stories contained in the Great Manchester Storybook, all the headlines are taken from Manchester-related song titles.
She’s A Star is a song by James, recorded in 1997.