Come and join us, say Ravens squad

July 28 2016

ENGLAND'S ‘The Lionesses’ and women’s football in general has at times this year out-shone the performance of some better-known men’s teams. There is a real enthusiasm for girls football, building teams from the ground up, and one that is doing well in the Bristol Girls League is The Ravens.

ENGLAND'S ‘The Lionesses’ and women’s football in general has at times this year out-shone the performance of some better-known men’s teams. There is a real enthusiasm for girls football, building teams from the ground up, and one that is doing well in the Bristol Girls League is The Ravens.

Coaches, Phil Jones and Mark Wheatley, train the team of 14 and 15 year old girls from Bishopston, Westbury Park, Lawrence Weston and Southmead. 

Phil said: “There are physical and social benefits to joining a team. It’s good for fitness and the girls form new friendships. When a lot of the girls join they’ve played a little football and learn to defend and attack and it’s great to see them get into the competitive side of things.”

The team have been going for four years, beginning when the girls played in the under 11 league. The Ravens now play in two age groups, an under 15 and an under 16 team, and have space for addition players. 

The coaches are looking for girls at school in Year 9 or 10 with an interest in playing football and who have some level of  ball skill. They may have kicked a ball around in the park but not necessarily competitively or have played previously in a team but for some reason, stopped. 

Phil added: “I think it’s about developing the girls' confidence. Some already have a latent skill - the idea of the coaching is to bring their skills levels to the fore and recognise their own abilities. 

“The girls start out from having little match experience but as time goes on they work together more as a team, and recognise each other’s strengths and weaknesses. The improvement that you see is a result of the training - we use fitness drills to improve ball skills and a positional sense. We like to think that we have built a real team spirit here.”

The Ravens are a good, solid, middle-ranking team who are looking to improve this season. They enter tournaments throughout the year, including the Gloucestershire Football Association Cup and Futsul, and compete in the Bristol Girls League.

Training is on a Monday evening, from 6pm - 7pm at Elm Park, beside Filton Sports and Leisure Centre. Girls who are interested in joining the team are encouraged to contact The Ravens by the end of August as the season starts early in September, either by email bristolravens@gmail.com or call Phil Jones on 07954 132207.