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Women's Football News
On the eve of the Lily Parr Exhibition Trophy, the FA have today acknowledged the incalculable damage done by their 50-year ban on women's football and honoured Lily Parr and the pioneer women's players of the 1920's.
Statements from Trevor Brooking and the FA's Equality Officer, Lucy Faulkner, to the organisers of the Lily Parr Exhibition Trophy, which is to be played tomorrow at 3pm in Regents Park, read:
"In 1921 The FA requested that clubs belonging to the Association should refuse the use of their grounds for matches played by women with the purpose of raising charitable funds. Furthermore, they stated that 'the game of football is quite unsuitable for females and ought not to be encouraged.
"The damage this did to the women's game is hard to calculate but I am confident that with the support and investment of The FA in women's football in 2008, the sport will continue to go from strength to strength.
"The FA now has almost 150,000 affiliated players and 8,500 teams across the country, and all of them owe a debt to the pioneer players from the 1920's, including the women from Dick, Kerr Ladies.
"It's 30 years since the death of one of their star players - Lily Parr who scored 43 goals in her first season with the club as a 14-year-old. She became the first woman to be inducted into the National Football Museum's Hall of Fame and continues to be a role model for female players to this day."
Trevor Brooking, The FAs Director of Football Development commented: "I am immensely proud of our female players today and the skills they demonstrate on the pitch, we are determined to raise standards still further in the women's game and have invested with Tesco's in 66 Skills Coaches to ensure that one million youngsters aged 5-11 develop better techniques. Many of these will be young girls and we are aiming to train the next generation of women like Lily Parr - fit and skilful players respected for their footballing ability."
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