CHAMPIONS LEAGUE PLACE FOR BLUES
Blues Ladies have been rewarded for their fine season in the inaugural FA Womens Super League with a place in the prestigious UEFA Champions League.
Blues Ladies have been rewarded for their fine season in the inaugural FA Women’s Super League with a place in the prestigious UEFA Champions League.
In what was the dawn of a new era for women’s football in England, David Parker’s side pushed title-winners Arsenal all the way, losing just once, to finish runners-up to the Gunners.
To add to that achievement, Blues also made it all the way to the Continental Cup final.
Now the ladies have been boosted by the historic news that they will test themselves at the next level having been granted a place at club football’s top table by UEFA.
Having seen their male counterparts earn respect in this season’s UEFA Europa League, the ladies will continue to fly the BCFC flag on the continent in 2012.
The top two teams in England’s highest domestic league are granted a place in the UEFA Champions League, with Blues set to enter the final 32 stage of the 2012/2013 season. Ties are likely to be played in October 2012.
On hearing the fantastic news, BCLFC chief executive Steve Shipway said: “This is a magnificent step forward for us and a reward for the work of all the staff and players over the years, and in particular our performance in the FAWSL last season.
“We were practically playing park football 11 years ago so for us now to be playing in the UEFA Champions League is fantastic. We're looking forward to the challenge and hope that we can maintain this to be able to play at the same level for many seasons to come.”
Blues Ladies and England star Karen Carney added: “After finishing as runners-up in the league and reaching the cup final last season, to be in the UEFA Champions League is a fantastic achievement for the hard work that everyone put in.
“It will be an amazing experience and all the girls will relish playing against the best teams in Europe. I had the chance to play in the competition with Arsenal so I know it’s a lot different from the WSL.”