Better pitches key to building on England's Euro 2022 success, says MP

The Premier League and West Bromwich Albion have been urged to build on the success of the Lionesses by spearheading a drive for more all-weather pitches.

England's Lionesses lift the Euro 2022 trophy at Wembley
England's Lionesses lift the Euro 2022 trophy at Wembley

John Spellar MP said triumph of the England women's football team at Euro 2022 would encourage more women and girls to take up the sport.

But he warned the "legacy" of the victory could go to waste across Sandwell unless facilities were drastically improved.

The Labour MP for Warley has called on the Premier League to join forces with Sport England, the Baggies, Sandwell Council and schools to increase the number and quality of pitches available.

Mr Spellar said: "England’s Lionesses have given a great boost to the nation, and will encourage women and girls to participate in the sport.

"But for that they need more local facilities and Sandwell needs more pitches – especially modern all-weather pitches.

"I know a number of local schools are desperate to secure the pitches not only for their pupils but especially for local community teams.

"I am urging the schools, the council, West Bromwich Albion, Sport England and the Premier League to work together to get this moving.

"Don’t let the enthusiasm of this triumph go to waste. Lets build a real legacy."

Following Sunday's win over Germany the Football Association said it was aiming to get 120,000 more girls involved in the sport.

However, grassroots teams have warned the drive could be hit by the lack of access to good quality pitches.

The Government has allocated £230million to transform grassroots football facilities across the country in a bid to get more people involved in sport following the pandemic.

More than £450,000 was given to South Staffordshire District Council for the construction of a new floodlit 3G football pitch at Wombourne Leisure Centre/Wombourne High School.

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