Government is investing £25 million into grassroots women’s football to safeguard the next generation of Lionesses.

It is an issue I raised in Parliament earlier this year and have had subsequent meetings with ministers about in recent months.

During questions to the Department for Digital, Culture, Media, and Sport, I asked what further government support could be given to girls’ grassroot football to ensure anyone wanting to play had the opportunity.

I made it clear I believed there was more support government could offer and that we needed to explore how this could happen.

I highlighted the excellent work being done at Wilmslow’s football academy and by their coach Erik Garner.

This summer pupils from schools across Wilmslow, Handforth, Alderley Edge, Styal and Mobberley took part in a Girls’ World Cup organised by Wilmslow football academy.

The event was a huge success but it was only possible in part due to funding from Wilmslow Town Council.

The competition was won by Mobberley C of E Primary School the joy and excitement of the pupils when they showed me their medals and told me all about the tournament was very special.

That is why I welcome this new Lionesses Futures Fund with the £25 million for government and £5 million from the FA. It will provide opportunities for thousands of young girls and for some could be the start of a flourishing career.

The fund will provide 30 new state of the art 3G pitches along with accompanying facilities and will be delivered by the government, the Premier League and the FA’s Football Foundation.

The sites will prioritise women’s and girls’ teams across England and there will be reserved peak-time slots, women, and girls only evenings as well as priority booking for women’s and girls’ teams at every venue to support demand.

Women’s football is still growing and it is right we build on the legacy our Lionesses are creating.