The Magpies announced on Friday morning that Newcastle United Women has become the first-ever professional football club in the FA Women’s National League history as they are expected to transition from semi-professional to full-time pro status ahead of next season.
Up until next year, NUFC and Newcastle United Women operated as two completely separate entities, but they merged after Saudi Arabia’s PIF takeover of the club in Oct. 2021. Less than two years later, both clubs have made huge strides toward greatness in their fields.
The Lady Magpies were promoted to the FA Women’s National League Northern Premier Division—the third tier of the women’s football pyramid—last season after winning the Division One North title as a semi-pro team.
In 2022, the club introduced a development squad to establish a talent pathway leading to the first W team, and now that the women’s side has turned fully professional further horizons are expected to be reached in quick succession with the obvious, ultimate goal of reaching the English top-flight division in a few years—the long-chased Women’s Super League.
Along with receiving competitive salaries from next season on, Newcastle announced that the players will also benefit from “better training sessions throughout the week” while having access to “professional-grade equipment, treatment facilities, and injury prevention resources.” The club will continue to play its home matches at Kingston Park, with a capacity of 10,200.
Darren Eales, CEO of Newcastle United stated that “This is a historic moment for our Newcastle United family and for women’s football on a regional, national, and international scale. Newcastle United Women holds immense significance in our vision for the club, and this transition comes at the perfect time as we pursue sustainable success.”
Dan Ashworth, Sporting Director of Newcastle United, emphasized the importance of Newcastle United Women’s success within the club’s sporting objectives: “We are delighted to support the team’s progress by establishing a professional model around Newcastle United Women. This transition to full-time professionalism will enable the team members to fully focus on their careers and the next chapter of Newcastle United Women as supported professionals.”
Head Coach Becky Langley expressed her excitement, saying that “This is a momentous occasion. We aspire to be a beacon of light in the journey toward professionalism in women’s football and to inspire women and girls who dream of pursuing a career in the sport. I am thrilled to collaborate with the players as we help them become the best athletes they can be.”
Howay the Ladies!