She Can Play looking to go one better at FA People's Cup
PUBLISHED: 07:15 18 March 2017
2017 The FA
A women's football team is back on the Wembley trail after narrowly missing out at last year's FA People's Cup final.
She Can Play FC was set up by Kat Clifton, partly as a way of publicising her new company of the same name, but also as a way of bringing together friends from university.
They decided to enter the FA People’s Cup, a five-a-side tournament which sees thousands of teams enter.
And after battling through local and regional rounds, the girls made the national final with the winners being invited onto the pitch at Wembley during the FA Cup Final.
And the disappointment of that day is spurring the team on to go one better this year, with progression from the local round in Shepherd’s Bush already secured.
Clifton said: “We got through to the national final and were beaten 3-2. We really want to get back to the finals and now we’re through to the regional finals.
“I don’t want to tempt fate but we have got subs this year. Last year when we were tired we just went in goal.
“It was a really great experience but one goal meant they got to go on the pitch while I went home in tears.
“I want to get there this year.”
The side came together originally when they were at university in Brighton and has members from across Essex as well as Wembley and Hackney and base themselves in Shoreditch for ease.
And this year the company entered a second team into the tournament.
The She Can Play Mums are literally that; mums of the girls who train with the company who decided they wanted to have a go too.
“They entered into the Over 35s and won a couple of games,” said Clifton. “They did really well.
“They came third out of six which was quite a good effort. They loved it.”
She was also blown away by the publicity with one video attracting over 500,000 views.
Now though the focus switches back to the ‘first team’ who play their regional heats in their home town of Romford on March 25.
Clifton said: “We’re hoping to have some of our pupils there supporting us.
“We started the company last year and already have around 60 training with us.
“Women’s football has never been so popular. It’s a massive difference from when we were at university.
“It’s been ever since the women’s team came third in the World Cup. For the first time people were seeing girl’s football on the back pages.”
The growth of the game could mean more and more teams challenging them in the future but Clifton couldn’t be happier at that.
“It’s really exciting,” she said.
She Can Play is based in Romford and specialises in coaching football for girls and women.
For more information go to http://www.shecanplay.uk/