Lancaster City Ladies begin their season this weekend in a new league.
Their first season as a re-formed ladies’ team went incredibly well, winning a league and cup double and earning promotion to the Lancashire FA Women’s County League Championship League.
Every other side in the 11-team division has played once so far, with Lancaster City having an extra week to prepare for the start of the season proper.
In their first game this season, they take on Horwich St Mary’s Ladies at the Giant Axe at 2pm on Sunday (September 10), in a repeat of the Lancashire FA Women’s County League Challenge Cup Final in June, which the Dolly Ladies won 5-3.
Horwich St Mary’s Ladies were also promoted last season. While Lancaster City Ladies went up as champions of the LFA Women’s County League Division One North/West, Horwich St Mary’s Ladies earned their promotion by finishing top of the Division One South/East.
This weekend’s game will be the first competitive match under Lancaster City’s new management team of Paul Winstanley and Becky Upjohn.
They replace Scott King, who guided them to their brilliant double trophy win.
Becky Upjohn made nine appearances for the team last season before a knee injury in the game against Whitehaven AFC Ladies in January ruled her out for the remainder of the campaign.
She confirmed that, for the season ahead, she will likely just focus on her managerial role rather than being a player-manager.
Becky was caretaker manager in the semi-final of the Challenge Cup against Penwortham Town Ladies Reserves.
Paul Winstanley is a former physio at the club and has previously given his support to the management team on match days, including in the Dolly Ladies’ cup final.
Sunday’s game will take place at The Giant Axe, but future home games will usually be at the Willow Lane Playing Fields (LA1 5LP).
The team are captained by Kayleigh Young, who scored an incredible 46 goals last season in what was an amazing first season for everyone involved with the team.
Kayleigh and Paul will be previewing the season ahead on Beyond Radio’s Saturday Sports Show from 9am this Saturday (September 9).
The majority of players from last season have stayed on for this year, and there are a couple more additions that have been announced this week.
Beth Leeming and Nicole Acton have joined for the 2023/24 campaign, and the club are still looking for new players.
Training is on Wednesdays from 6.30pm until 8pm. It will take place at Willow Lane this coming Wednesday (September 13) and then training sessions will be at Carnforth High School (LA5 9LS) from September 20.
Listen to Beyond Radio’s Saturday Sports Show with special guests Paul Winstanley and Kayleigh Young this Saturday (September 9) from 9am.
The fixtures for Lancaster City Ladies’ season are as follows:
September 10: Lancaster City Ladies v Horwich St Mary’s Ladies
September 17: Blackburn Eagles JFC Ladies v Lancaster City Ladies
September 24: Lancaster City Ladies v Penrith AFC Ladies Development
October 1: Wigan Athletic Ladies & Girls Development v Lancaster City Ladies
October 8: Lancaster City Ladies v Bolton County Women
October 22: Haslingden Ladies & Girls Reserves v Lancaster City Ladies
October 29: Lancaster City Ladies v Euxton Girls & Women Development
November 5: Preston North End Women Development v Lancaster City Ladies
November 12: Lancaster City Ladies v Fleetwood Town Wrens Ladies Development
November 19: Lancaster City Ladies v Whitehaven AFC Ladies
November 26: Horwich St Mary’s Ladies v Lancaster City Ladies
December 3: Lancaster City Ladies v Blackburn Eagles JFC Ladies
December 10: Penrith AFC Ladies Development v Lancaster City Ladies
December 17: Lancaster City Ladies v Wigan Athletic Ladies & Girls Development
January 7: Lancaster City Ladies v Haslingden Ladies & Girls Reserves
January 14: Euxton Girls & Women Development v Lancaster City Ladies
January 21: Lancaster City Ladies v Preston North End Women Development
January 28: Fleetwood Town Wrens Ladies Development v Lancaster City Ladies
February 4: Bolton County Women v Lancaster City Ladies
Whitehaven AFC Ladies v Lancaster City Ladies was initially arranged for September 3, but will now be played at a later date, to be confirmed.