Scottish women’s football must be heard at Hampden, insists Glasgow City boss Scott Booth

Scottish women’s football could be left behind if it doesn’t receive better representation in the corridors of power at Hampden, Glasgow City head coach Scott Booth has warned.

He insists the female game has made huge progress despite rather than because of the administrative structure at Hampden and is calling for urgent change.

Senior figures have long argued that it is under-represented when decisions are made by the Scottish Football Association at board level, and the most recent suspension of all football under the men's Premiership and Championship due to coronavirus has done little to dilute that view.

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Echoing the frustration expressed previously by the club’s chief executive, Booth says women’s football in Scotland needs a voice or could lose ground as other nations make progress in Europe and around the world.

Glasgow City head coach Scott Booth is preparing his team to resume their SWPL1 season against Celtic on Sunday.
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“It’s a necessity,” he said. “There has to be someone with a voice, not just one person representing the women’s game on all boards. It is vital. We don’t have it. When big decisions are made, 100 per cent we need a voice for women’s football.

“It’s a constant battle for the women’s game in Scotland. Despite that, the game is proceeding and progressing. It feels like there is no-one on our side.

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“There is no-one in power for the women’s game to fight that battle. This, for me, has been highlighted recently. You have people making decisions for the women’s game in Scotland who shouldn’t be.”

Booth was speaking ahead of this Sunday’s resumption of SWPL1. His team host Celtic in a contest between two of the three full-time clubs in the eight-team top flight.

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Rangers are the other club who this season invested in their squad and went full-time. The BBC also announced that it will screen more live SWPL1 games this season than ever before, further enhancing the profile of the league. But at SFA board level just one representative is able to speak up for female football. City were furious that they could not continue training while carrying out Covid testing.

Booth added: “You’d think it would be getting easier, but it is not. The women’s game needs people at the top level to fight a case. Not to be told second hand what is happening. Most clubs in our league feel the same way. We’re putting in the time and finances into the women’s game.

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“The women’s game is on a platform we’ve never seen before. I don’t know why we are hell bent on making it difficult. To a certain degree, I’d have to say, there is a certain set of rule for the men’s game and a different set for the women’s game.”

Asked if the game in Scotland could be left behind, he replied: “If you don’t take you opportunities you will be left behind. Top clubs across Europe understand that they need a women’s team and they are taking it seriously, putting finance into it. That’s not going to go away. So we have to back it and promote it in Scotland. We have a chance to make it special and different. The work that is going on. We need change to avoid a missed opportunity.”