"When she asked to start playing football, we weren’t sure if it would be for her. Although our daughter has always loved to be outside and you’d describe her as “active”, a year back we wouldn’t have described her as “sporty”. I’m not sure who was more nervous as we made our way down to the first training session, her or us, looking back it seems crazy that any of us had doubts. LGDA has been so good for her, we’ve seen a shy, quiet girl first find her confidence and now start to grow into one of the most vocal members of the team, offering encouragement and ideas to her team mates on the pitch.

 

The girls’ first season together was a very steep learning curve with a lot of harsh results, often after travelling up to 45mins to get to away games all over the county. It speaks volumes about the environment the coaches have created that the girls built and maintained a strong bond throughout the season, never giving up, learning and developing their skills all the time and playing with a smile on their face. Seeing their progress as a parent has been hugely rewarding and the way that LGDA approach football has inspired me to start taking coaching qualifications too. To us, the coaching at LGDA is everything that junior football should be and stands (sadly) in stark contrast to the way things are at some clubs. They put the girls’ enjoyment and development at the heart of everything. It’s not about scores but about performances, it’s not about keeping your best players on the pitch while others lose out on the opportunity to develop, and it’s not about ‘over coaching’ by giving players step by step instructions from the touchline. Squads are kept to a size where every girl gets plenty of football each week, the girls are free to make mistakes and learn for themselves without fear, things are geared towards them learning to think for themselves, organise themselves and make their own decisions on the pitch"