Women’s Football funding a benefit to all
On Target
February 24, 2023

Women’s Football funding a benefit to all

The announcement by the secretariat of the St Vincent and the Grenadines Football Federation earlier this week, that each of the 27 licensed clubs will be the recipients of $10, 000 to help in their participation in the 2022/2023 National Club Championships, must be embraced.

Indeed, the decision by the SVGFF’s executive will provide a shot in the arm for female Football.

This is notwithstanding that the SVGFF has been mandated to ensure that the US$500,000 Development Fund received in 2020 from FIFA, is spent on that component.

Hence, the amount allocated and assured to the clubs, will certainly go a long way in assisting them to fulfil their end of the bargain to develop the young girls and women.

Accordingly, the licensed clubs can now afford to equip their players with one of the biggest bug-bears that is stalling the sport, by providing them with football shoes.

A deeper analysis of the clubs’ funding, shows that an aggregate $270,000 will be spent. But, what is most critical to the process is that approximately five hundred (500) females will be involved in the tournament.

The potential numbers are encouraging, as it will be the largest women’s football tournament in the history of St Vincent and the Grenadines.

It must be stated unambiguously that this column is not stating that the $10,000 injection is all that is needed to propel female Football, but it can be the springboard for a change in direction.

Hence, it is a win-win situation for all, as clubs get that financial ease and support, while the Technical staff of the SVGFF gets an opportunity to widen the pool of players, do talent identification and get a data base of available female players.

This cannot be slighted that over the years, there has been a stop/start to women’s Football, as it is fickle and always not an easy sell to parents and to some young ladies.

More so, Women’s Football has some innate nuances that have to be skilfully navigated.

Those who are looking in from the outside, may not be aware of some of the obstructive factors that hinder its growth and sustainability.

Conversely, persons who are engaged in the administration would readily admit that getting females to play Football is a painstaking proposition.

But, it is even more difficult to get the females to stay in the sport, hence the turn over and attrition rates are high.

This is not to say that the anticipated increase in participants in the broadened format will immediately translate into success stories for the female game. Neither it is guaranteed that most of the ‘newbies’ who wet their feet would stay and continue after the tournament.

The challenge is there for all who endeavour to have female Football become consistent and sustainable to put the systems in place to prevent it once again blowing hot and cold.

The upcoming tournament that comprises twenty- seven clubs should set the tone for future platforms and designations of how the SVGFF’s current technical staff want to see the sport evolve.

Yes, as it was quoted by former FIFA President – Sepp Blatter that the “ Future of Football is Feminine”, should not be an idle pronouncement.

In the Vincentian context, it can be the reality, as it is often touted in some quarters, that St Vincent and the Grenadines’ best chances of entering the world stage in Football is via the women’s game.

This column though cannot be as explicit and confident on the notion, but suffice it to say that a platform can be laid for St Vincent and the Grenadines to be better in the female format.
Therefore, the eight teams in the 11 vs 11 format and the nineteen (19) in the 7 v 7 exercise, should serve as pointers for technical narrative, interest and genuine love for the sport.