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Girls’ Football Week: An interview with Stoke City striker, Kate Asher

Girls’ Football Week is a national campaign running from the 23rd-29th April 2018 and is aimed at getting as many girls as possible to take part in playing the beautiful game. At Stadia, we want to match the campaign’s central statement and encourage young girls right across the UK to go for a kickabout, with the help of professional, women’s football player, Stoke City striker, Kate Asher.

To find out what advice Asher has for young women looking to pursue a career in football, read on!

 

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A Little About Kate Asher

Asher is a loyal athlete of Stoke City Ladies Football Club, having played continuously for the team throughout her entire football career. To date, she’s devoted 10 solid years of service to the team.

During her time, she’s earned a reputation for being a prolific goalscorer and instrumental player in the success of the team over those years. Perhaps after a career seasoned with successful highlights, she’ll join the 35,000 qualified female football coaches in the UK!

 

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What age did you start playing football and how did you get into it?

14 years, my Dad heard of trials with a local team so took me along. I joined a team called Newcastle Town, then when Stoke City was formed in 2001, I signed right away with them.

 

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Which female footballer is your role model?

Kelly Smith, she has won a number of accolades and was a prolific goal scorer for both club and country.

 

What does football mean to you?

Everything! It has been part of my life for the last 16 years. I attempted to retire once but missed it that much I went back the following season. If I’m not playing it, I’m watching it.

 

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What’s your favourite football drill or skill to learn?

Any form of attacking drill where I get to work on things that can improve my game. Alternatively, a development game between the first team and the reserves is always fun.

 

Do you have any tips for young girls wanting to join a girls football team?

Get stuck in and just go for it, whether it’s just for fun or competitive, it’s worth having a go. The game has come on so much in the last decade. It is now possible for girls to potentially make a career from the sport, so what’s to lose?

 

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What are the benefits of playing football including both mental and social benefits? Can you note any positive experiences?

There are a number of benefits you get from playing football. To start with, it’s exercise which improves your mood as it releases endorphins. This, in turn, can help boost your overall confidence and improve your self-esteem.

Football or exercise in general really helps to reduce stress levels and helps keep you happy and relaxed so it’s worth doing it as often as possible.

During my time at Stoke I have experienced highs and lows in my personal life but playing football and being part of a team has always helped me through any bad or stressful times.

 

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What’s your favourite thing about FA girls football week?

I think it is a great idea/campaign to get girls involved; not only is it raising the profile of the women’s game but it encourages girls of all abilities to try and get involved.

 

Where do you see the future of women’s football?

It keeps growing year on year. With the women’s national side doing so well in the last tournament, it has raised the profile of the game massively. I see the future for women’s football forever increasing in participation and support.

 

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To learn more about Asher and her background with Stoke City Ladies, visit here.

Alternatively, if you’re inspired to get involved with Girls Football Week, why not take a look at what part you can play in this great sporting campaign?