Updated Saturday, 10th August 2002
Women's football is back in the spotlight. A new league structure is in place and they hope to attract some media attention.
After the success of the women's national team, the new Scottish Women's Premier League are hoping that they will be able to attract more media attention. They lag well behind the leaders in the field, USA, while the women's game in England is attracting increased television coverage as it prepares to launch a professional league. They are on the lookout for a sponsor willing to offer around £20,000 to support the new set-up. Scottish Women's Football Association administrator Maureen McGonigle said: "Hopefully it will create much more media interest. It is the only way we are going to get sponsorship." In the past the woman's game has been treated as a novelty but with Scotland's Womens National team making the top 16 in Europe things are starting to change. One small step is that many national newspaper have agreed to carry the new league's results. The migration of players has affected, the former dominant force in Scottish football, Ayr the most and they may have a fight on their hands to match new champions and local rivals Kilmarnock. Killie art due to represent Scotland in this season's Women's UEFA Cup and have added international Shelley Kerr to their ranks.
The new league will bring a more professional approach to running the game in Scotland. They are a long way from being able to offer players a wage but they have to start somewhere. The teams in the league will include most of Scotland's international players, and the fixture list has been designed to help the national side. McGonigle hopes that the new league will end the migration of top players to leagues in other countries. We have reported on Scotland and former Ayr United forward Julie Fleeting move to the United States, and a number of players are playing in leagues in Iceland and Sweden.
The other 30 women's clubs will remain in the Scottish Women's Football League, and it is hoped that the lessons learned and benefits of the new set-up will filter down to them.
Opening fixtures Sunday 11 August (kick-off 14:00):
Dundee v Giulianos
Cove Rangers v Kilmarnock
Ayr United v Lossiemouth
Hamilton v Glasgow City
Inver-Ross v Hibs
Shettleston v Raith Rovers
Ger Harley (email@example.com)
Shane Knox (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Al McIntosh (Al@scottishfitba.net)
Scottish-Fitba.Net incorporates ScotlandEuro2008.net