Dons apply to join Women’s Super League

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MK Dons Ladies have applied to be part of an expanded FA Women’s Super League in 2014.

The Dons Ladies, who are now into their fourth season, currently compete in the South East Combination League but have ambitious plans to strengthen the presence of women’s football in Milton Keynes.

And now the Dons Ladies have submitted their bid to be part of the new look WSL, which is set to transform the women’s game in England.

The League currently features just eight teams – Arsenal, Birmingham City, Bristol Academy, Chelsea, Doncaster Rovers Belles, Everton, Lincoln Ladies and Liverpool – and the new season is set to commence later this month.

However, as part of the FA’s five-year plan to develop the game, the SWL will be split into two leagues comprising of 20 teams, with a promotion and relegation system.

The clubs who have submitted bids to the Football Association will now be invited to interviews by the selection panel where finances, sustainability, staffing and coaching will all be assessed.

The FA Selection Panel will announce the line-up for the new Women’s Super Leagues in June.

Charlene Ward, girls and women’s officer for the MK Dons SET, said: “We are very keen to be part of the successful WSL. Undoubtedly, the success of the league is important for the future of the women’s game and we have worked hard to produce a robust and viable bid.

“However, we are sure that there will be an over-subscription of bids and the FA will have a tough job to determine which clubs will go forward and we have complete faith in their judgement.”

John Cove, chief executive of the Sports and Education Trust, and a director of MK Dons said: “This is the exciting next step in the development of the women’s game in Milton Keynes.

“We have developed our girls and women’s work steadily but progressively since the club started in 2004 and, If we are successful, this will complete the pathway for the development of women’s football locally and regionally that will hopefully see local women playing for England in the not too distant future.

“If we are ultimately unsuccessful in our bid we will of course remain committed to the development of the women’s game and our team specifically, but will redouble our efforts to ensure we are in a better position next time the opportunity is available.”