Fears over future of Norwich City Girls’ football centre

Action from the under 12's match against Arsenal.

Action from the under 12's match against Arsenal. - Credit: ©Archant Photographic 2008

A centre that helps girls in Norfolk develop their football skills will lose its licence because of an FA restructure.

Norwich City Girls' Centre of Excellence holds training sessions twice a week at central venues in Norwich.

The centre, which mirrors a similar programme for boys, helps girls develop and progress up to the age of 16, but the FA licence will lapse at the end of the current season, after 17 years.

Reasons are believed to include claims the centre has not produced enough players for the international team. However, Dan Wynne, marketing and communications manager for the Community Sports Foundation, said in recent months two players had played for the England under 17 and under 15 teams.

More than 1,800 people have liked the Facebook page Save Norwich City Girls Centre of Excellence.

In a letter, Ellie Bird, who travels from Ipswich twice a week said the decision had 'broken the hearts of all the girls at Norwich City'.

She wrote: 'The Centre of Excellence does not only help me improve as a footballer, it also improves my social skills, my confidence and I have also built some very strong friendships.

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'It is a place where I feel I can showcase my talents, as can the other 60-70 girls playing at Norwich alongside me... The excellent staff and managers have so much passion towards our football and all the players have endless respect for them.'

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