Women’s football is not just about the WSL. We need to build a player pipeline at Women’s National League level too. We are London Seaward. We’re independent, player-owned, inclusive. And you can help us play.
One of the big barriers to women playing the game at a serious level is cost. Pitches cost. Coaches cost. everything costs. Sponsors are hard to come by. That means most women’s teams end up have to resort to some variant of ‘pay-to-play’ at a higher level than men’s teams do.
Pay-to-play can be alleviated somewhat through a partnership with a men’s club, which provides some access to funding and shared resources. But these relationships are precarious. If that men’s club decides to do their own thing (it happens), you lose it all. Trust us: we know.
We hate pay-to-play. Because it stops people playing. We are a proud East London club and we see women and girls who struggle or leave the game because they can’t afford to play. That is talent. It is the pipeline. Those are future Lionesses lost.
If you, like us, want women’s football in the UK to really shine, then clubs need to be able to open their doors to everyone, regardless of social and economic background. It costs roughly £200 per season (before other costs), per player for them to play. We ask our players to try and find a sponsor. But if they can’t, we support them centrally instead. Because we want them to play for us. We want them to win for us.
This is where you can help.
Firstly, you can buy a season ticket (they’re only £35) and come watch us play. We’d love to see you! But if that doesn’t appeal, then we have a Patreon. If the Euros fired you up, then join us. At £3, £5, or whatever you can afford. You get cool things! Videos! Programmes! Tickets! Maybe even a kit!
Because for us, every donation matters. It isn’t a tiny amount. It’s ‘bread and butter’ income. All your £3s quickly add up. Every 200 is another player who can train. Who can play. Who can just focus on the game we love. On being a footballer, without worrying about where the money to do that comes from.
Yes, the WSL is great. But clubs like us and other National League teams need you. We ARE the pipeline. As the Lionesses themselves have said: we build the future from the ground up.
That ground is fertile. Help us sow it.