Southampton FC Women has named Starling Bank as the team’s official principal partner for the 2022-2023 season.
From 30 October, with a match against Sunderland AFC Ladies, the banking firm’s logo will feature on the front of players’ shirts.
The pair have outlined that the sponsorship is a continuation of Starling’s celebration of women’s football, following its national sponsorship of the UEFA Women’s EURO 2022.
This collaboration saw Starling launch the first fantasy football game for women’s football in the UK and award £23,000 in grants to grassroots teams.
Marieanne Spacey-Cale, Head coach of Southampton FC Women, said: “This is an exciting time for the team as our first season in the championship.
“To have the backing and support of Starling, an organisation that’s fully committed to growing the women’s game, is really motivating. We look forward to our first match showcasing Starling and beyond as the season goes on.”
As part of the partnership, Starling and Southampton have outlined that they will also launch an initiative in a bid to develop grassroot coaches at local clubs throughout Hampshire to ‘grow the pipeline’ of female footballing talent.
The deal comes whilst its football team is now playing in the FA Women’s Championship following back-to-back promotions.
Jill Scott MBE, former Lioness and ambassador for Starling Bank, said: “It’s fantastic to see the investment and passion for women’s football continue. Funding, training and development at grassroots level is essential to help take the game to the next level.”
Meanwhile, Rachel Kerrone, Brand & Marketing Director at Starling Bank, highlighted the brand’s commitment to supporting up-and-coming female football players. “We try to level the playing field through equal training opportunities and dedicated resources,” she added.
The club has outlined that it continues on a mission to encourage more fans to support the women’s game and has reported a 120% increase in season ticket sales compared to last season.
As part of this drive to grow the women’s game, all Southampton FC Women’s games will be played at St Mary’s Stadium. The team also trains at Staplewood Campus, the same facilities as the men’s side, and are now full-time professionals.