Portsmouth announce transition to full-time professional model following promotion

A Portsmouth flag is seen flying high in the sky
A Portsmouth flag is seen ahead of the Sky Bet League One match between Portsmouth men and Barnsley men at Fratton Park on April 16, 2024 (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

Portsmouth secured promotion to the Barclays Women’s Championship for the first time following their 2023/24 season in the FA Women’s National League. The club will turn fully professional before their debut campaign in the second tier commences.

This is the first time in the club’s history that Pompey’s players will be offered fully professional contracts, with the club only transitioning to a semi-professional model a year ago. The groundbreaking commitment comes as Portsmouth prepare to embrace their place in the second flight.

The rapid progression of Pompey’s strengthening of its women’s side is welcomed by head coach Jay Sadler. He adds to the announcement: “By providing our players and staff with the opportunity to train and develop on a full-time basis, we will unlock further potential and heavily increase our chances of achieving even more success for the club.”

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The south coast club makes the remarkable step as it looks to further its investment in the women’s team. Portsmouth’s CEO shared: “This is an exciting time for women’s football in Portsmouth and across the United Kingdom.”

Pompey state that the development will also include additional multi-disciplinary support on the pitch. This model will also extend beyond the playing squad. The implementation of full-time backroom staff members will facilitate further contact time with players. Further, Portsmouth will have more on-pitch sessions, increased gym programmes and extra off-pitch support.

The move forms an important step in the right direction. The change aims to enhance Pompey’s performances and improve both player and staff wellbeing. It should also help to drive forward the women’s game in the Portsmouth area and beyond.

The club are also looking to strengthen their off the pitch operation. The appointment of a general manager, a women’s safeguarding and player welfare officer, and a sales and marketing executive are further proof of Pompey’s commitment to their women’s set up.

Granting its team the opportunity to dedicate their full professional selves to their game is a hugely positive step, one for which Pompey fans and the Championship audience can rejoice.

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