To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to promote women's football in (a) Liverpool and (b) England.
The government is determined to get more girls and women playing sport, something we set out in our sport strategy, Sporting Future. Football is the second most played team sport for adult women and the top ranked team sport in terms of participation for girls.
We are investing £14.6million into the Football Association (FA) through Sport England between 2017 and 2021, to support their grassroots participation, talent and coaching programmes. £2.6million of this is specifically reserved for women and girls talent programmes, helping the FA reach its aspiration to double the number of women and girls teams. The FA also receive an additional £2m each year towards improving diversity in its coaching workforce.
Government is also investing £18million to the Football Foundation charity each year to help deliver a programme of new and improved community sports facilities in towns and cities across the country.
All public funding provided is used to benefit men’s, women’s and disability football; for example, investment in a mixed coaching programme or facility will benefit all groups within that community.
Liverpool, for example, has benefitted to the sum of £15.2millon for football programmes over the last three years from the Football Foundation, which includes a mix of public funding and investment from the FA and the Premier League. This includes the delivery of a Parklife Football Hub, which is home to women and girls clubs, recreational programmes and women’s beginner football festivals.