A RECORD number of enquiries have been received by the Herefordshire FA from women and girls looking to play football.

A new wave of female players have been inspired to take up football thanks to the Womens World Cup in France.

Herefordshire FA Women’s and Girls Football Development Officer, Joe Mathias, has noticed the increased interest at a local level.

He said: “With record viewing figures and attendances, players like Ellen White and Lucy Bronze have become household names and it’s great to see the women’s game being taken more seriously.

"The impact of mainstream interest in the Lionesses and women’s football is being felt across the country and Herefordshire is no different.

"We have had a record number of enquiries from both adult and junior female players looking to get into football and the timing couldn’t be better.

"With our wildcats programme offering young players an introduction to football, more women’s teams than ever before and even female walking football now on offer – there is a route into football for everyone who wants to give it a try.”

England’s Lionesses were eventually knocked out by competition favourites and eventual winners USA in an agonising semi-final. USA went on to beat the Netherlands in the final, a match which coincided with the Herefordshire Football Association Wildcats World Cup at Ross Juniors. The Wildcats programme offers girls aged five to 11 the perfect introduction to football in a safe, fun environment and has been a big success.

“We invited Wildcats from across the county to take part in a mini world cup tournament before sitting down to watch the final, added Mathias.

"The wildcats have only been training for a few weeks and it was great to bring them together to showcase what they have learned so far.”

With interest at an all-time high, Mathias is keen to hear from anybody wanting to get involved in football.

He added: “If you know someone who was inspired by the Lionesses this summer and you think they’d like to give football a try, then Herefordshire FA can recommend local clubs in your area.

"It doesn’t matter your age or if you have never kicked a ball before – there is something for everyone.”

For more details or if you want to give football a try contact: Joe.Mathias@HerefordshireFA.com or ring 01432 342179.