This summer’s Women’s World Cup in Canada has attracted millions of viewers across the globe - but fans of the female code need only turn the focus closer to home for an insight into the thriving schoolgirls’ scene.
Girls’ football has been a fundamental part of the Bocombra Primary School sports programme across the past two years.
The after-school coaching project has received high-profile support this season from the game’s governing body, FIFA, plus Adidas.
Backing of that level towards the Bocombra scheme has helped to build on the progress developed under the guidance of Irish Football Association primary schools’ coach Chris Wright.
“We started the programme last year and the response has been great from the school and girls,” said Wright. “FIFA has provided tee-shirts this year as part of the ‘Live Your Goals’ project, with bibs and footballs sponsored by Adidas.
“It is all part of the ongoing development of girls’ football by the IFA in keeping with FIFA objectives.
We started the programme last year and the response has been great from the school and girlsChris Wright
“The girls have been working really hard across the past two years and responded superbly to the coaching.
“The demand is strong and it serves as an excellent addition to the IFA after-school plan.”
Mark Vallelly, the Bocombra principal, has highlighted benefits away from the football pitch.
“It has been a tremendous success and the girls love having something to call their own within our after-school activities,” he said. “Chris is excellent with the pupils and you can really see his work starting to bear fruit.
“We can see it helping the girls’ fundamental skills in areas such as movement and co-ordination.
“And research proves success on that front can also benefit overall education.”