Transfer Window: Female Players’ PerspectiveNews
Written by Sharon Wong - IFCPF Communications Officer (Asia-Oceania)
IFCPF presented its’ first Transfer Window webinar focusing on understanding CP Football from the female players’ perspective.
Hosted by Gabriëlla Van Driel from the Netherlands, she was joined by Susana Pérez Solé from Spain and Nicole Christodoulou from Australia to discuss where CP Football (Female) currently stands and where it needs to go to further develop and grow.
The webinar has now been viewed over 1,000 times on facebook alone in the last 12 hours.
Currently, the state of CP Football (Female) differs from country to country. IFCPF delivered a development camp for female players from across the world in 2018 in Barelona, and then three regional camps in Australia, the Netherlands and Trinidad & Tobago during 2019. The camps have received positive and enthusiastic reactions, not only for the sport of CP Football but especially for the players themselves having the opportunity to train in a competitive setting and meet others who share similar experiences, knowing that football can bring people of all cultures and abilities together.
In Australia, females were included for the first time in the 2019 National Championships in mixed gender teams, followed by their first Asia-Oceania CP Football female only training camp. Whilst the experience to play with the males was a fantastic opportunity to develop skills, Nicole acknowledged that the physical differences between males and females do play a difference when it comes to playing in competitive matches and the importance of women being able to compete amongst themselves is vital to the development of CP Football for females.
Whilst there has been positive developmental progress for females in CP Football, there continues to be barriers experienced by players & coaches regardless of geographic locations. Su and Nicole both stressed the importance of needing regular training sessions with their teammates, being given the same opportunities as the men’s game and the need for more female role models for younger girls to look up to and emulate.
‘We want young girls to be able to dream to be a female CP Football player. They need someone to look up to and say 'One day, I will be you.’" - Susana Pérez Solé
The first IFCPF World Cup (Female) event would have been occurring right now but is postponed due to COVID-19. It would’ve seen 8 countries represented in a 5-a-side format tournament allowing the women’s game to receive the same exposure as the men’s and giving the players the chance to experience the pride of representing their country in an international tournament. This tournament will now take place in 2021.
As Gabriella said "We are here. We just need the opportunity".
IFCPF are committed to creating opportunities for CP Football (Female) to develop, beginning with this webinar to highlight what the female experience is and bring exposure to what this sport has to offer for our female athletes. It is crucial that the game is developed with an athlete-centred approach in recognising that it is not about replicating the men’s game for the women but understanding what our female athletes want and creating programmes that cater to those needs.
Thank you to Gabriella, Susana and Nicole for sharing their experiences and insight.
“To the females: Dream big and never give up. We will get our time to shine.” – Nicole Christodoulou
Future Transfer Window webinars
Keep an eye on our website and social media channels for upcoming Transfer Window webinars
Join the IFCPF CP Football (Female) Community on Facebook