Everton Ladies celebrated the launch of the FA Women’s Super League on Tuesday.
The Blues officially kicked-off their involvement with the newly re-vamped women's league with a Fun Day at the Liverpool County FA on Walton Hall Avenue.
Everton and USA goalkeeper Tim Howard was also on hand to help promote the Club's involvement in the league, and joined a selection of the Everton Ladies at the special ‘girls only’ soccer day to mark the occasion.
The new league, which launches nationally on Monday 11 April, will see the best eight English women’s sides in the country competing in a summer league for the first time – a move which is set to revolutionise and grow women’s football so that the game can become more commercially sustainable.
For Everton, the league opens with a mouthwatering trip to Liverpool Ladies on Thursday 14 April (kick-off 7pm).
Speaking at the official launch, Howard was delighted to see so many budding young footballers taking part in the event, especially the large number of promising goalkeepers.
"Women's football is fantastic and I think all you have to do is look at the result from the national side last week - they beat my home country!” he said.
"And it was no easy feat. The USA are the one of the best in the world and it just goes to show how far the women's game has come and where it's going.
"There are so many little girls going out and watching their idols play - it's a family friendly game and it's really good to see,” added Howard, who took particular interest in budding young goalkeepers.
“The fact that they are not forced to go in goal and don the gloves and the shirt - they are excited to do it and dive around and get muddy - that's what I do everyday! So it's good to see them wanting to do that,” he added.
England Women defeated the USA 2-1 at Leyton Orient on Saturday evening – their first victory over the Americans in 22 years.
Everton Ladies midfielder Jill Scott played a full 90 minutes in the Three Lions’ victory, and says the entire Everton squad can’t wait for the new domestic league to get going.
“We're very excited,” Scott told evertontv. “It's been a long wait. We've had a long pre-season and the girls are just raring to go now.
“The girls here today are our target group. We want these girls to come along and watch and support us. I think doing days like this allows the girls to get to know us and hopefully attract them and their families to come to our games.”
The FA has invested over £3millon into the new semi-professional set-up, which will run through to September with a break in June and July for the FIFA Women’s World Cup.
It is hoped that an improved matchday experience will help clubs build bigger fan bases and that players will become greater role models for the next generation of female footballers.
Everton Ladies will compete with seven other teams over the course of the summer: Arsenal Ladies, Birmingham City Ladies, Bristol Academy, Chelsea Ladies, Doncaster Rovers Belles, Lincoln Ladies and Liverpool Ladies.
Everton’s first home game is against Doncaster Rovers Belles on Wednesday 20 April at Marine FC’s Arriva Stadium in Crosby (kick-off 7.45pm). Tickets for this fixture are priced at just £4 for adults and £2 for concessions and can be purchased on the turnstiles.
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