Published: 06:00, 08 April 2021
Kent Girls Elite have teamed up with the London City Lionesses.
The Kent academy provides coaching and development for girls and their partnership will see them renamed the London City Lionesses Kent Payer Development Programme.
It’s a partnership that will form a new pathway for youth players in Kent to progress to the professional game with London City Lionesses and will be launched next season.
Kent Girls Elite currently operate from under-12 to under-16 level and the system will feed into the Lionesses’ development squad with the addition of an under-18 side, which supports the first team currently playing in the FA Women’s Championship.
From next season, the club’s youth teams will play under the name of London City Lionesses Kent Girls.
The partnership aims to mutually benefit the two clubs, with London City Lionesses offering elite coaching support, football pathways and educational programmes to an expanded pool of youth players from the Kent area.
Paul Vennard, of Kent Girls Elite, said: “This is a really exciting partnership for everyone involved with Kent Girls Elite FC, most of whom were affected by the closure of the Gillingham FC Girls RTC.
“More importantly, this is a huge opportunity for all of the talented footballing girls in Kent. There is now a pathway from under-12 right through to the FA Women’s Championship, the only such pathway in Kent. It is the next step in an exciting journey for the club, its players and coaches, and we hope to develop first-team players for London City Lionesses in the not-too-distant future.”
The Kent academy was established in June 2020 following the closure of the Gillingham Regional Talent Club. At the time there was no other FA recognised player pathway for girls in Kent. Training and matches have been taking place at the Abbey School in Faversham, K Sports in Cobdown and the Sittingbourne School.
Trials for the London City Lionesses Kent Payer Development Programme are set to take place in the next few months. Click this link to express an interest in joining.