SAINTS remain committed to funding their women’s and girl’s teams.

The club’s managing director, Toby Steele, revealed to the Daily Echo that the initial £1million investment which was put in last year has increased slightly.

This extra money is down to Saints expanding their academy in order to attract the best female players available.

It also comes on the back of an excellent season from Marieanne Spacey-Cale’s side where they achieved promotion with a 100 per cent record.

“We invested £1million last year but we have actually increased that amount this year because we have expanded the academy version for the women”, Steele revealed to the Daily Echo.

“We have also started a senior development squad which means we now have two senior women’s teams.

“That means quite a significant cost in terms of the players, coaching and general infrastructure.

“Our commitment to the Women’s team is really strong.

“We had 5,000 coming to watch their FA Cup game at St Mary’s which shows that there is an appetite for it in the city.”

Saints Women were due to play local rivals Pompey on Thursday, but that game had to be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The St Mary’s side had gone years without women’s side but have now established themselves in the region.

They’ve been helped by having England legend Spacey-Cale on board, whose aim is to guide them into the Women’s Super League as quickly as possible.

Steele made it clear that the club are doing everything they can to help their manager achieve this goal.

He added: “What’s great about the Women’s team is that it’s completely integrated.

“They train at Staplewood and it’s about them having access to the same facilities that the men’s team has.

“They are doing really well and the way we have integrated it has not only really benefited them but also the club.”