Scotland Women to play home games at Hampden Park
Fiona McIntyre is delighted that Hampden Park is to become the new home of the Scotland Women’s team.
The Scottish Football Association’s head of girls’ and women’s football was at the national stadium to publicise the launch of ‘Accelerate Our Game’, a new strategy produced in partnership with UEFA and designed to enhance all areas of the girls’ and women’s game in Scotland from grassroots to elite level.
One key target within its objectives is to make Hampden the home of the Scotland Women’s national team, who have previously played matches at places such as Fir Park, Tynecastle Park, Easter Road and at St Mirren’s ground.
McIntyre, mindful that the record crowd for the Scotland’s Women’s team was 18,555 when they played Jamaica in a World Cup warm-up game at Hampden in May 2019, and with the 2023 World Cup qualification campaign soon to start under new boss Pedro Martinez Losa, said: “It is huge. It is something I am really excited about and I know the players are really excited about it.
“They have had a fantastic experience here already when they played Jamaica and got that record crowd.
“Hampden is the home of Scottish football and so we are absolutely delighted about it and we can’t wait to start our qualification campaign here.
“The strategy is a huge milestone for girls’ and women’s football in Scotland, it is the first strategy for girls’ and women’s football specifically and it sets out the objectives or the next four or five years. It is really exciting.”
McIntyre is looking for qualification to the 2023 World Cup finals from Martinez Losa, who arrives from Bordeaux on a three-year deal.
The 45-year-old Spaniard, who also previously managed Arsenal Women, starts on August 1 with the World Cup qualification campaign beginning the following month.
Scotland are in Group B alongside Spain, Ukraine, Hungary and the Faroe Islands.
McIntyre said: “We want to get back to the finals. I think that is important.
“His track record speaks for itself, wherever he has been he has had success.
“And coming from Bordeaux where he has just qualified for the Champions League, we are really excited to see the skills he can bring over.”
As well as increasing crowds by 10 per cent annually, other key targets include a review of how elite competitions are delivered and the implementation of an improved governance model by the 2022/2023 season, and the introduction of a national Under-23s programme to help bridge the gap between youth and senior international football.