This week has seen a lot of news coming out of FC Barcelona. While most people have focused on the departure of Lionel Messi and the current financial struggles the club faces, one positive announcement was made.
La Masia, Barcelona’s famous youth academy, has for the first time in 40 years taken in female residents. Nine Barça B women players have moved into the Centre de Formació Oriol Tort where they will reside, play football and continue their academic studies.
The first female footballer to combine secondary education with her progression in the club’s ranks was Patri Guijarro in 2015. Since the now first team regular first entered La Masia six years ago, the number of young women football-scholars increased to 16 last season.
This will be the first year that female players from outside the Barcelona area will be able to attend La Masia as residents. Speaking about this new step for women at FC Barcelona, club coordinator of female youth football Jordi Ventura stated:
“This is a historic moment and another example of the team’s commitment to women’s sport. Since 2015, when the women’s football team turned professional, we have made giant strides and this is another major drive forward for the section and La Masia”.
The current Spanish and European champions have demonstrated yet another example of their commitment to both gender equality and their women’s football team, despite the recent issues the club is encountering.
The nine scholars are: Lucia Corrales, Berta Doltra, Judit Pujols, Ona Baradad, Laura Coronado, Meritxell Font, Martina Fernandez, Claudia Riumalló and Alba Caño.