What a wonderful season it has been for us on Tyneside. Newcastle United have brought the fans European football once again, the U18’s reached the FA Youth Cup Quarter Finals and the Semi Finals of the Youth League.
Mike Ashley has also committed to investing £15m on improving the youth system at the club, bringing in the best talents from across the globe. But the most successful team this season has been Newcastle United’s Women, who completed the league and cup double in April, a fantastic achievement for the self-funded club.
Many players also had success at University and College levels during the 2011/12 season. Captain Sarah Wilson, along with Hannah Marshall, won the BUCS Premier League North. Gateshead College, featuring NUWFC first team regulars such as Courtney Lock and Carla Armstrong lifted the league title too, as well as reaching two national cup finals.
A tremendous achievement, multiple players winning leagues with multiple teams, it shows the commitment and passion our girls have for the game of football, yet they get lambasted because football is a ‘man’s’ game. I urge all Mag readers to try and get down to at least one NUWFC game next season and to see the level of football these women play at.
The women are also making a name for themselves off the pitch. NUWFC have a participant in this year’s Miss Newcastle competition, as Stephanie Lorraine will take to the catwalk on May 18th. The extremely talented Miss Lorraine has captained Newcastle City School’s at both U14 and U16 level and will look to break into the first eleven next season after winning Woman of the Match for the Reserves in the County Cup final.
So what is next for the women of Newcastle United?
The side have taken part in the Robson Fives tournament in aid of the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation for the last two years, and will look to defend their title on the 1st July as they send two teams to the tournament.
There will also be many fundraising events taking place over the summer, with the aim to raise money for the club’s necessities, such as kit, facilities and transport to games.
So whilst the Newcastle’s male players will be at the Euros, or sipping it up on a beach, Newcastle’s women will be back on the training pitch working towards the challenges ahead. They will be playing in the Premier League North, the second tier of English Women’s football, and the girls must step up their game to compete at that level.
Whilst the girls will be battling on the pitch, a new sponsor is still needed for the club off it. If you can help the girls in anyway, follow @NUWFC on twitter and drop them a message.
Hope to see many of you at a game next season.