Ahead of International Women’s Day (8th March 2022), we've partnered with the female football supporter’s organisation Her Game Too, which aims to tackle sexism in sport.
The partnership will see us create a dedicated female supporters’ group for Southampton FC fans – 41%* of fans are female (joint highest in the Premier League) - providing a safe space for female fans to come together and share the matchday experience.
The partnership has been announced alongside news that Southampton FC Women has reported a 454% growth in women’s game attendance and a 180% growth in women’s season ticket holders since last year.
As a result of the club’s ongoing focus on equality and inclusion, the year-on-year increase can be attributed to several club-wide initiatives that promote women’s football, encourage allyship, and inspire more girls and women to take up the sport. This includes working closely with partners, such as Starling Bank, to support our women's team in achieving its goals and ensuring the gameday experience matches that of the men’s team.
Jasmine Newberry is our Her Game Too ambassador and she said: “As a lifelong Southampton fan, season ticket holder, and general admirer of the beautiful game, it’s amazing to have the club officially backing the #HerGameToo campaign. Football is a game for all - and I’m looking forward to working with the club to promote this message, educate others on what it means, and develop true inclusivity for fans, aspiring footballers, and the women’s team. Everyone deserves to feel safe, welcome, and accepted in football. It’s Her Game Too.”
Sharing his thoughts for a greater level of gender equality within football, Toby Steele, Managing Director at Southampton FC, said: “While we appreciate there's still some way to go until gender equality within football is achieved, we've made great progress in this area over the last year. We hope our partnership with Her Game Too will help fortify our commitment to ensuring women are represented equally in football and demonstrate our wholehearted commitment to ensuring all fans, regardless of gender, feel welcome and safe at St Mary's”.
With the aim of inspiring the next generation of women leaders, we recently hosted an event at the stadium for 20 young women and girls aged 11-16 to develop leadership qualities. The event was part of the Premier League Changemakers programme, and allowed attendees to ask panellists, including Women's first team player Ella Pusey and Lead Sports Scientist for Southampton FC Women's team, Laura Bowen, about their career journeys and experiences with Saints.