Barclays reveal groundbreaking deal to sponsor Women's Super League
Barclays will become the Women's Super League first ever title sponsor in a deal beginning next season.
A landmark partnership has been announced today with Barclays becoming the title sponsor of the FA Women’s Super League with effect from the 2019-20 season.
The multi-million pound deal runs until July 2022 and will see the top tier of women’s football renamed as the ‘Barclays FA Women’s Super League’ as well as the introduction of record levels of investment into the women’s game in England.
An exciting and much-needed element of the new partnership involves The FA and Barclays collaborating to increase the growth of women's football at grassroots level. Barclays are to become the lead partner of the FA Girls’ Football School Partnerships, a nationwide scheme to help develop girls’ access to football at school.
As a result, a network of hubs will deliver bespoke FA programmes for their local network of schools in order to encourage, excite and engage girls to make football part of their lives.
The partnership includes an annual prize pot of £500,000. Before this, WSL winners were not awarded any official prize money. The money will be distributed based on final league position.
The FA's director of the women's professional game Kelly Simmons said: "We are delighted to announce our landmark partnership with Barclays and are looking forward to them joining us on a journey to transform the future of women’s football,”
“Their record, multimillion-pound commitment will impact all levels of the game and will support our ambition to make the Barclays FA Women’s Super League the world’s most successful league, on and off the pitch.”
Former Arsenal and England striker Kelly Smith added: "Even when I was playing, I was hoping a big brand would come on board and help promote and develop the women's game.
"It's in such a healthy place now and you can see the interest growing year-by-year.
"If England can do well at the World Cup and get to the final or even win it, the game will be taken to a new level. It's a healthy place to be."
As women's football continue to grow and improve, this is a massive step in the right direction that will raise the profile of the sport to an even higher level.