AN added fillip is being exerted into the development of women’s football on island, as part of the Saint Lucia Football Association (SLFA) Inc overall developmental strategic plan.
SLFA President Lyndon Cooper expounded on some of the finer points in play to strengthen the women’s game and increase participation, particularly amongst younger players.
Cooper said the FA wants to ensure that players begin playing the game at an early age and in the long run to be eligible for national selection and representation.
Saint Lucia is keeping in line with the wider CONCACAF development policy and this has merit in helping the association achieve its overall goal.
“Saint Lucia is part of a membership, which includes the Caribbean Football Union (CFU), the CFU is part of CONCACAF and CONCACAF is part of FIFA. But Saint Lucia independently is part of CFU, CONCACAF and FIFA, so whatever you do it has to be in compliance with what the overall objective is,” said Cooper.
To substantiate that stance, he added: “If CONCACAF is launching a development programme, it is anticipated that through practice we will be part and parcel of it to benefit from it. “As a result, we could develop the sport originating from their concept.”
The SLFA will also look to put in an added thrust to manage the ‘Grassroots Development Programme’.
For in order to compete internationally, players must begin to play the sport from as early as five years old , and so by age 10 to 12 they will have a better understanding of the game.
Currently, the SLFA is preparing its female youth team to compete in a global tournament – the Girls Under-14
He said that the process entails the SLFA’s full participation in this development programme.
“It’s a development league for us, it’s a starting point. We don’t anticipate to highlight the negativity, but what we’re doing is that if there is any shortfall is to have an intervention so that we could achieve the objective,” noted Cooper.