SSE to energise women's football in Scotland
Image: Colin Banks, SSE Head of Sponsorship with Scotland National Coach, Anna Signeul and some of her players
The Scottish FA and Scottish Women’s Football (SWF) this morning welcomed SSE as the first major sponsor of women’s football in Scotland.
As part of the new agreement, which will provide investment across the women’s game, SSE has become an official partner of the Scotland Women’s National Team and title sponsor of the newly re-branded SSE Scottish Women’s Cup.
Benefits will include, for the first time, prize money for the 2016 SSE Scottish Women’s Cup winners, with a prize money pot to be extended to earlier rounds from next season.
The sponsorship comes at an exciting time for women’s football in Scotland, with the national team on the verge of qualification for its first ever major tournament finals.
Anna Signeul’s side sit second in UEFA Women’s EURO 2017 qualifying group 1 with one more match in Iceland next Tuesday. A minimum of a play-off place has been secured, but they could qualify as one of the best second-placed teams later today, if results in other matches go their way.
In the domestic game there have been even more firsts, with Scotland now allocated two places in the UEFA Women’s Champions League. This season Hibernian join Glasgow City with a thrilling tie against European giants Bayern Munich in October.
Scotland National Coach, Anna Signeul, said: “This is a very exciting announcement, and one that recognises the hard work taking place on and off the pitch in Scotland over the past few years.
“We’re delighted SSE will be working with us to support the women’s game in this country, and I’m sure this new investment will help us to continue to grow the game, and break new ground.”
SWF Joint Chair, Viv MacLaren, said: "We would like to thank SSE for its investment, which will significantly help us to realise our aim of ensuring every girl or woman who wants to play football has the opportunity.
“We are delighted that, amongst other benefits, players in the SSE Scottish Women’s Cup will be rewarded for their hard work and dedication with the first ever prize fund.”
John Stewart, SSE Director of Human Resources, said:
“SSE is proud to be the first major sponsor of women’s football in Scotland entering this partnership with one simple ambition - to make a difference to the future of women’s football and sport.
“We have already made a commitment to supporting women’s football through The SSE Women’s FA Cup but see this investment as an opportunity to help drive the women’s game forward in Scotland, inspiring both future players and supporters of women’s football.
“SSE also sees the partnership as an opportunity to increase grassroots support for girls with the goal to get more girls playing the beautiful game.”
The deal will kick-off ahead of this year’s SSE Scottish Women’s Cup Final at New Douglas Park, Hamilton, on Sunday 6th November, which will be broadcast live on BBC Alba for the first time.