Portsmouth F.C. Ladies

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Portsmouth F.C. Ladies
Portsmouth FC Ladies Crest
Full name Portsmouth Ladies Football Club
Nickname(s) Pompey Ladies
Founded 1987
Ground Westleigh Park, Portsmouth, England
Ground Capacity 5250 (526 seated)
Chairman David Coyle
Manager Katie Poore
League FA Women's Premier League Southern Division
2013–14 FA Women's Premier League Southern Division, 4th

Portsmouth FC Ladies, colloquially known as "Pompey Ladies", is a women's football club for the south coast city of Portsmouth in Hampshire, England. The club currently plays in the FA Women's Premier League National Division after winning promotion to the National Division for the first time in their history in 2012. Their male counterparts are Portsmouth F.C. Their biggest rivals are Southampton Saints LFC and Brighton & Hove Albion WFC.

History[edit]

Early Years[edit]

Portsmouth Football Club Ladies was formed in 1987, at a time when women`s football was in its infancy and consequently the only option was for the team to play in the Southern Region League.

The club entered the league in 1988 where they enjoyed 10 good seasons. During this period the club started introducing Youth teams to compete at a local level.

In 1998, ten years after the team first entered the English women's league system, Portsmouth F.C. Ladies gained promotion into the South West Combination League and in the same season won the South West Combination League Cup.

Portsmouth F.C. Ladies became the first women's club in Hampshire to receive the F.A. Charter Standard Club Award for excellence in provision of coaching and support staff in 2002. After having finished runners up in the 2000/2001 and 2001/2002 seasons, in the 2002/2003 season Portsmouth demonstrated the impact of this excellence in coaching as the team won the South West Combination League in a convincing manner, dropping only 2 points during the course of the entire season, to gain promotion into the Premier League Southern Division for the first time.

Premier League Southern Division[edit]

The 2003/2004 season saw The First Team maintain their status in the Premier League Southern Division while in the same season Portsmouth F.C. Ladies reserve team won the Premier League Reserves Southern Division Two to gain promotion into Division One. The following season, Portsmouth F.C. Ladies retained the Hampshire Cup after beating local rivals Southampton 3-0 in the final.

The following season, Portsmouth finished the league in second place, finishing just eight points behind Chelsea. For the next few seasons, Portsmouth consolidated their position in the Premier League Southern Division, finishing comfortably mid-table. During the next few seasons, Portsmouth didn't finish lower than fourth place.

During the 2010/11 season, Pompey finished in fourth place in the league but reached the Semi-Finals of the League Cup where Pompey fell to a narrow 2-1 defeat against eventual winners Barnet. This cup run included a 2-1 victory victory over Premier League National Division side and league winners Sunderland.

In 2012, Pompey secured the Women’s Premier League Southern Division title and promotion to the National Division for the first time in their history in their penultimate match of the season, a 2-1 win over Plymouth. At kick-off Portsmouth's promotion rivals Colchester and West Ham had played all their fixtures while Portsmouth had two games left of their season. Needing a win to guarantee the league title, Portsmouth fell behind to a Plymouth goal midway through the second half. However two goals in the last 20 minutes secured the league title for Portsmouth, who were presented with the trophy at their final match in London. Portsmouth brought the curtain down on their most successful season with a 4-1 win at Queens Park Rangers. QPR welcomed the champions with a guard of honour as the Blues ran onto the pitch prior to kick-off.

Premier League National Division[edit]

Pompey faced a tough Premiership National division debut with an away tie against the previous season's double winners Sunderland who also eventually ended up winning the 2012/2013 Premier League National Division title. Pompey's first win in the National Division came in a home time against Aston Villa at Moneyfields, following a 3-0 win in their second game of the season. This was followed by a 3-2 win against Manchester City, with the winner coming in stoppage time.

In the cups, Pompey reached the Fourth Round of the FA Cup following a comprehensive 5-0 victory against QPR at Westleigh Park before falling to defeat away at Yeovil Town. In the League Cup, Pompey finished second in their group and faced Manchester City in the round of sixteen. Pompey won 2-1 at Westleigh Park infront of a large crowd. In the Quarter-Finals, Pompey defeated Barnet 2-1 but Pompey's league cup run came to an end at the Semi-Final stage once again, losing to eventual winners Aston Villa. Following Pompey's last home again against Leeds United, it was announced that manager Vanessa Raynbird would be stepping down as manager to take up a director of football role while Perry Northeast and Katie Poore would become joint managers. The 2012/13 seasons also saw Pompey taking part in the bidding process, alongside 29 other teams around the country, to join the expanded [Women's Super League].

Back to the Southern Division[edit]

Following the reorganisation of the English women's football league structure with the expansion of the Women's Super League, Portsmouth found themselves back in the Premier League Southern Division for the 2013/2014 season, the third tier of English women's football, however with the two leagues above this forming the first and second division of the Women's Super League, there was no longer the opportunity to be promoted from this league. Pompey's first match back in the Premier League Southern Division was a comprehensive 3-1 victory against Premier League debutants Chesham United. Pompey also played their first ever game against Lewes Ladies.

In December of that season, Pompey Ladies made their Fratton Park début. While having been in existence for over 20 years, the club had never previously at Fratton Park and this demonstrated the increased co-operation between the men's and ladies' section of Portsmouth FC. In front of a record-breaking crowd for the Blues, Pompey fell to a 2-1 defeat, however despite the result, the match was significant for what it represented off the pitch.

The second half of the season saw Pompey Ladies in blistering form, with the Blues winning seven consecutive matches to climb from mid-table to challenge for the title. Eventually, the Blues' winning run was ended by Cardiff City, who themselves had only lost one game all season (an early season fixture against Portsmouth). Nevertheless, the Blues finished a credible fourth place in the league, an impressive outcome after having lost a number of first team players to the Super League.

The 2013/14 season also presented Pompey Ladies' best ever run in the FA Women's Cup. Entering in the 2nd round, the Blues comfortably saw off Keynsham Town and Lewes before travelling to Crystal Palace of the South East Combination League, who themselves had caused an upset by defeating Premier League side Derby County. The Blues were handed a home tie to WSL 2 side Durham WFC in the 5th round of the cup. A brilliant team performance saw the Blues secure a 2-1 victory against their higher league opponents with the winner by Charley Wilson coming deep into stoppage time. Pompey were through to Quarter-Final of the FA Women's Cup for the first time in their history and were the last remaining team outside of the WSL 1. The Blues were again handed a home tie against Notts County, who were top of the WSL1 at the time of the match. Pompey held Notts County for 70 minutes before goals from England internationals Jess Clarke and Sophie Bradley secured a 2-0 win for the Super League side.

Aside from the FA Women's Cup, Portsmouth Ladies retained both the Hampshire Cup, following a 6-0 win over Gosport Borough, and the Portsmouth Cup.

This season also saw live radio commentary for the first time provided by Express FM's Grassroots Football Show and later by South Coast Sports Radio.

Academy[edit]

In 2000 Portsmouth F.C. Ladies officially introduced a Youth Structure within the club, catering for U14 and U12 teams.

Since being introduced, this has continued to expand and now the club has programmes allowing girls and women of all ages to participate in football. In 2005 they became only the second women's club in Britain to establish a Football Academy for females.[1]

For the 2014/15 season, an U18 side will be introduced to bridge the gap between the U16 team, which is currently the eldest youth team level, and the senior teams (including both the reserves and the first teams), allowing a clear pathway for players coming up Portsmouth FC Ladies' youth ranks. This new U18 team will complete in the newly formed Hampshire U18 League along with other local sides.

Stadium[edit]

Portsmouth F.C. Ladies have played in a number of different stadiums throughout their history. Currently, Portsmouth the majority of their home games at the West Leigh Park, West Leigh Park, the home ground of Conference South side Havant & Waterlooville. Prior to this, Pompey played at the Moneyfields Sports Ground, the home ground of Wessex League Premier Division side Moneyfields FC. The team have also in recent seasons played at The City Ground, home of Southern League Division One South & West side Winchester City.

In the Fourth Round of the 2012/13 FA Cup, Portsmouth played their home tie against QPR at West Leigh Park. Subsequently this stadium was announced as the home venue for the rest of the season, although the last two home games were played at the College Ground, home of Hayling United FC, as a result of the overrunning of the season due to bad weather and the pitch at Westleigh Park being relaid. Westleigh Park continued to be used as Pompey Ladies' main home ground for the first half of the following season, however poor weather over the New Year period saw Pompey Ladies relocate, with the Blues playing most of the second half of the season at Privett Park, home of Conference South side Gosport Borough.

Current squad[edit]

As of June 2014

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
England GK Sadie Blakely
England GK Rhia Cox
England DF Tiff Taylor
England DF Nadine Bazan
England DF Lauren Murphy
England MF Kaylee Schumann-Edwards
England MF Sarah Kempson
England MF Naomi Greene
England FW Gemma Hillier
England FW Charley Wilson
England FW Lucy Quinn

Notable former players[edit]

This is a list of Portsmouth FC Ladies players who have or still play in the FA Women's Super League.

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
England DF Jade Kirby (current Super League player)
England MF Kirsty McGee (current Super League player)
England MF Gemma Simmonds (current Super League player)
England FW Jemma Tewkesbury (current Super League player)
England FW Leeta Rutherford (current Super League player)
England FW Shelley Cox (current Super League player)

Honours[edit]

FA Women's Premier League National Division

  • Winners: (1) 2011-12 [2]
  • Runners-up: (2) 2004-5, 2006-07

South West Combination Women's Football League

  • Winners: (1) 2002-03
  • Runners-up: (2) 2000-01, 2001-02

South West Combination League Cup

  • Winners: (1) 2002-03

Hampshire Cup

  • Winners: (8) 2004-05, 2006–07, 2008–09, 2009–10, 2010–11, 2011-12, 2012-2013, 2013-2014 [3]

Seasons[edit]

For a full breakdown of Portsmouth FC Ladies' league and cup history since 2003, see List of Portsmouth F.C. Ladies seasons.
Season Division Position Cups Top Scorer Goals
2006-07 Women's Premier League Southern Division 2nd Hampshire Cup Brooke Chaplen 11
2007-08 Women's Premier League Southern Division 4th Brooke Chaplen 8
2008-09 Women's Premier League Southern Division 5th Hampshire Cup Lisa Langrish 12
2009-10 Women's Premier League Southern Division 4th Hampshire Cup Zoe Nash 11
2010-11 Women's Premier League Southern Division 4th Hampshire Cup Lindsey Roe 11
2011–12 Women's Premier League Southern Division 1st (Champions) Hampshire Cup Jemma Tewkesbury 18
2012–13 Women's Premier League National Division 9th Hampshire Cup Charley Wilson 15
2013–14 Women's Premier League Southern Division 4th Hampshire Cup Lucy Quinn 20

External links[edit]