Talent in Cork women's soccer leaves room for Cobh Ramblers and City

East Cork club are hoping to host National League games in St Colman's Park in 2022
Talent in Cork women's soccer leaves room for Cobh Ramblers and City

A general view of St Colman's Park, where Women's National League games will be hosted by Cobh Ramblers in 2020. Picture: Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

COBH Ramblers are stepping up their preparations to potentially join the Women’s National League next year as they are currently inviting expressions of interest for a number of roles at the club for the 2022 season.

Pending a successful application to the FAI Club Licencing Committee, the Rams are searching for a Women's First Team Manager (UEFA A Licence), Women's U17 First Team Manager (UEFA B Licence), Assistant Coaches and Goalkeeping Coaches for both teams.

Mary McDonnell, who is on the club’s committee, is confident that their application will be accepted and she believes it will be huge for women’s football in Cork.

“The search has been going well, we have had a number of applications for all the positions that we have advertised,” said McDonnell.

“I think this is a very exciting time. If you think back to last year - the 20x20 campaign, the main message of that was ‘if she can’t see it, she can’t be it’. I think it has been a long time coming that there is a second Women’s National League team in Cork.

It’s a big enough area to have two teams to compete and who doesn’t want the local derby at both male and female level between Cork City and Cobh Ramblers?

“They would be the fixtures that everyone would look forward to. You see the excitement that builds around the men’s derby so it would be great to have that with the women’s.

“For a long time, elite players in Cork and Cobh have sometimes had to travel to other counties to play their football so it would be huge for the community to have this, to have a second women's national league squad.

“This is the fruition of all the hard work that has gone into women’s football in Cork over the past number of years, the game has grown so much here.” 

As well as managers and coaches, McDonnell insisted that the club are also on the lookout for more players to join their set-up.

THIS SEASON

For 2021, Ramblers will play in the Cork Women’s and Schoolgirls Soccer League (CWSSL) and their first game will see them take on Lakewood Athletic at St Colman’s Park on Wednesday, June 9.

Going forward they plan to have two senior sides with one playing in the Women’s National League while the other will remain in the CWSSL. The U17s will also play in the national league and they hope to add an U19s side in 2023.

“Our senior team would have been Springfield Ramblers last year playing in the Cork league but they are a schoolboys and schoolgirls club essentially so we reached an agreement with Cobh Ramblers for our senior team to come under their umbrella,” added McDonnell, who will also captain the senior side from right back.

“Our plan is to continue in the Cork league this year as Cobh Ramblers - it will essentially be our Springfield team from last season - and next year our aim is to enter the Women’s National League at senior and U17 level.

“We will continue with a team in the Cork league but they will be two separate entities so we are now just looking for a manager for our national league side.

“Our aim down in Cobh is to have a level of women’s football for everyone and anyone that wants to play.

Cobh Ramblers has this ethos of being a club of the community and that’s our main focus to continue that while also introducing a pathway for elite players within Cobh, East Cork and even within the whole of Cork.

“There is enough space for two national league clubs in Cork. We must still go through the application process, we are currently going through that at the moment but the hope is that we will get the license.

“We have a lot of the pieces in place. We have been promised by Cobh Ramblers that we can play at St Colman’s Park but even as Springfield Ramblers last year we played all our home fixtures there in the Cork league.

“It’s going to be the same this season, our first home game is against Lakewood on June 9 and that will be played at St Colman’s Park.”

The club is inviting expressions of interest for all roles no later than 5pm on Monday next.

Applicants must hold or be currently participating in the necessary UEFA Licencing (or equivalent) grade and relevant CVs with supporting details of qualifications should be emailed to applications@cobhramblers.ie.

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