Funding for national team squad ahead of World Cup.
Scotland’s Women’s National Team squad will be able to train full-time for the FIFA 2019 World Cup with additional Scottish Government funding.
The financial support will allow those players in the national squad who are currently not professionals to train full-time from January ahead of the tournament in France.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon confirmed the funding at Hampden Park ahead of the Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week.
“I’m proud to be patron of the Scotland Women’s National Team and it’s been fantastic to see the hard work of the squad and staff pay off with their qualification for the FIFA World Cup next year.
“This funding will allow all members of the squad to train full-time from January 2019 through to the World Cup in the summer. This will help to strengthen women and girls’ football in Scotland, and give Shelley and her squad the best chance of success in the finals.
“We want to increase participation of women and girls in sport and I hope the success of the women’s team inspires more women and girls to get involved in sport, from grassroots activity to elite level.”
Head Coach Shelley Kerr said:
“It was an incredible achievement to qualify for our first ever World Cup. It was a special feeling but now it’s incredibly important we focus on the future and how best to prepare for the FIFA World Cup in France.
“We are determined to start the tournament in the best possible shape and are delighted to have the support of the Scottish Government through the Scottish Football Partnership.
“We are in a fortunate position where a number of our players are already playing football full-time and this agreement allows all of our squad to be at their optimal best when the tournament comes around.”
The draw for the FIFA 2019 World Cup group takes place on 8 December 2018, and the final 23 woman squad will be announced in the lead up to the tournament which begins on 7 June 2019 in Paris.
The Scottish Government, sportscotland, the Scottish Football Partnership and the Scottish FA will undertake work on the detail of the scheme, the cost of which will be determined by the individual circumstances of eligible players but is expected to be around £80,000. This additional Scottish Government funding will be delivered to the players through the Scottish Football Partnership.
Scottish Women and Girls in Sport Week runs from 30 September – 5 October 2018.