By Ryan Gallacher
A committee member of the supporters’ association that runs St Mirren has hailed an ‘exciting’ development after the club announced its first women’s team.
The Paisley side revealed yesterday that it has formed a ladies’ team, which will be managed by Kate Cooper.
Saints’ new side will enter the Scottish Women’s Football League Division 2 West when the new season begins in March 2018.
However, in a press release on the club’s website, Cooper said that there are ambitions to quickly move through the leagues and into European competition.
Speaking after the announcement yesterday, Kenny Morrison, a committee member of the St Mirren Independent Supporters Association (SMiSA), which is the majority shareholder in the club, said it is a good time to form a women’s team.
Morrison, who helped bring the idea of a forming a ladies’ team to the fore at the club, said:
“It is exciting for St. Mirren.
“It is a good development. Women’s football seems to be at a point where it’s good for St. Mirren to get on board, look to have a team and push things forward.
“It will be interesting to see where it goes.
“The Scottish women’s team certainly appears to be successful, more sponsorship seems to be coming into the game and there is raised exposure.
“Glasgow City seems to have driven that with being involved in Europe, and it just feels like the game is moving on.”
Despite the team having to begin life three promotions off the top tier, Morrison is hopeful about the manager’s aims.
“Having spoken to Kate Cooper, she is fairly ambitious and hopes to get the team up the leagues and playing in Europe as soon as she can, and that would be very exciting as well, to have a St. Mirren women’s team playing in Europe.
“It is difficult to know how it will all happen right now as there are still things to be sorted out, where they will play, for example.
“As far as SMiSA, we will just be looking to support them as far as we can.
“But obviously we will have some discussion around that to see how we can support them and hopefully send some finance their way.”
Speaking to the club’s website, Chief Executive, Tony Fitzpatrick said:
“This is a fantastic development for our club.
“Women’s football’s popularity is on the rise in Scotland and more and more female supporters are attending St Mirren matches.
“The dream for me is to see our club progress and for us to have both a male and female team playing in Europe in the near future.”