The Football Association (The FA) has today announced that eleven pioneers of the women’s game have joined The FA’s Director of the Women’s Professional Game, Kelly Simmons, on the selection panel for the Barclays FA WSL Hall of Fame.
Unveiled by Kelly Simmons live on Sky Sports News at 14:30 today, the selection panel is made up of ex-players, ex-officials, FA staff and women’s football journalists and will be chaired by Kelly herself. The panel will each submit four names for consideration, before coming together to vote on who will be the first four inductees of the first-ever Barclays FA WSL Hall of Fame based on the individuals submitted. The selection panel is:
- Kelly Simmons – Chair and FA’s Director of Women’s Professional Game
- Ian Wright – Barclays ambassador, ex-player, and pioneer of women’s game
- Hope Powell – Ex-player and women’s football pioneer
- Marieanne Spacey-Cale – Ex-player and women’s football pioneer
- Mary Phillip – Ex-player and women’s football pioneer
- Vic Akers – Ex-coach and women’s football pioneer
- Wendy Toms – Ex-official and women’s football pioneer
- Jen O’Neill – Journalist – She Kicks Magazine
- Suzy Wrack – Journalist – The Guardian
- Jess Creighton – Journalist – Sky Sports News
- Rachel Pavlou – FA’s Women’s Development Manager
- Kieran Theivam – Ex-journalist and Barclays FA WSL Communications Manager
Announced in April 2021 as part of the league’s ten-year anniversary celebrations, the Barclays FA WSL Hall of Fame will look to recognise individuals who have made a significant impact on the league and will be reserved for an exclusive group each season. The first four inductees will be unveiled on Sky Sports News throughout the day on Thursday 7 October.
Talking about the selection panel and the Barclays FA WSL Hall of Fame, Kelly Simmons said: “I’m thrilled to be joined by individuals who have played a pivotal role in growing the Barclays FA WSL since its creation in April 2011. When creating the selection panel, it was important for us to have personnel representing the many voices of the women’s game. I’m really excited to see the list of nominees each of us submit.
“The Barclays FA WSL Hall of Fame is designed to recognise those who have made a major contribution to the league over the last ten years and it’s fantastic to see Barclays once again supporting this momentous occasion. As the chair of the selection panel, I want to say a massive thank you to those who will be joining me to select the inductees, and as always, a huge thank you to all of those who have been on this journey with us over the last ten years.”
The 2021/2022 Barclays FA WSL season kicks off on Friday 3 September with Manchester United and Reading set to open the campaign live on Sky Sports Premier League under the Friday night lights. This year the Barclays FA WSL will be more accessible than ever, with fans able to watch games live on Sky Sports News, the BBC and The FA Player. All fixtures for the upcoming Barclays FA Women’s Super League and FA Women’s Championship season can be viewed here.