4 March 2016
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon will be cheering on the Scotland Women’s National Team to victory after becoming their official Patron.
She welcomed the squad, coached by Anna Signeul, to Bute House where she discussed the team’s progress in their quest to qualify for the UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 championships in Holland.
— Nicola Sturgeon (@NicolaSturgeon) March 4, 2016
Part of the role will be promoting and championing the women’s team, working with football authorities to encourage ever-increasing participation in the game both from a playing and spectating perspective.
The FM was introduced to the squad by Anna and captain Gemma Fay and we found out that two of the FM’s cousins used to play football with one of the members of the Scotland squad.
She spoke to the squad about her delight at being named their patron and congratulated them on a strong start to their qualifying group:
It’s an exciting time for women’s football, which is one of the fastest growing sports in the world, and I hope to use this role to promote the Women’s game at all levels across Scotland. I would like to see more women participating in the sport, and more people watching the sport and will work with the Scottish FA and others to achieve this.
“I look forward to hearing about how I can support and help increase awareness of the game – and getting along to the games when I can.”
The First Minister, with her red blazer, looked like she was trying to get an early transfer from patron to backroom staff but she assured us she was happy with the new role!
She was also presented with a framed Scotland strip signed by the squad as a thank you for taking up the role.
The team were heading off to the gym as part of their preparations for their next game but, before they left, there was time for another few photos…and the obligatory selfie, and even a Snapchat!
When the FM becomes Patron of your national team ?. Absolute pleasure to spend the morning in Bute House #pwoud#swnt pic.twitter.com/1f7DYxG1lf
— Gemma Fay (@JimJam1981) March 4, 2016
— Lisa Evans (@LisaEvans_17) March 4, 2016
Scotland take on Spain in a friendly match on International Women’s Day (Tuesday 8th March) at The Falkirk Stadium. Fans can show their support for the squad, and International Women’s Day, in the run up to the match by tweeting – I’m supporting #SWNT on #IWD2016
There’s more pictures of the visit here.