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Over 150 girls get goalkeeping with the Foundation

The Foundation brought together grassroots goalkeepers for a popular half-term workshop...

| by Matthew Brown

More than 150 girls took part in an exciting programme of goalkeeping training drills hosted by Manchester United Foundation – in partnership with the South Manchester Girls Football League – during Easter half-term, allowing players to develop their technical skills.

Girls aged 10-16 joined sessions throughout the day at Eccles Sixth Form College, which were supported by staff from the Foundation and Manchester United Women, including women’s first team goalkeeping coach Ian Willcock, U21 goalkeeping coach Jordan Booth, and Regional Talent Club [RTC] goalkeeping coach Chris Bowcott.

The event invited girls who are playing as goalkeepers for local teams to get involved and take advice and training trips from the specialist coaches, with sessions helping players to improve their positioning, distribution and reactions, among many other key skills.

Girls who impressed had the chance to be signposted to the Foundation’s Emerging Talent Centre [ETC]. The ETC provides opportunities for girls to train once a week with the Foundation.

Several current RTC players, which is also managed by the Foundation through to Under-16 level, played alongside the signed-up participants, offering words of encouragement and tips of their own.

The Foundation’s Female Development Coordinator Hannah Mitchell said: “It was humbling to be involved in an event that proved so popular and seeing so many girls making such a fantastic effort in the sessions; the standard was really impressive.

“It’s important that Manchester United Foundation continues to deliver events such as these to ensure participation levels keep rising in girls’ football, both at grassroots level and through our community programmes, and demonstrate the pathway that is available for our young people to progress in the women’s game.”

Nieve, 10, a goalkeeper whose favourite player is Mary Earps, said: “We have been working on passing, saving and different ways to dive. I’ve learned lots of new things.”

Maizie, 12, was among the RTC goalkeepers taking part alongside the signed-up participants. She said: “I’m here to train with the other goalkeepers, trying to help them out.

“I like to see other goalkeepers because I can see who I can help and what I need to do better by looking at them. You can definitely learn a lot from other goalkeepers.”

To find out more about the Foundation’s female development provision, click here.