- This is the third women's national team
- Senior squad and futsal team are already in action
- 28 selected players to train in Riyadh
WHAT HAPPENED? The Gulf nation is making rapid progress in women's football since 2019 when the Saudi Arabian Football Federation (SAFF) established a dedicated women's football department. The senior squad and the Futsal squad are already producing results. In fact, the senior team are unbeaten in 2023 having won two out of the three matches they have played so far and are on their way to officially enter the FIFA Rankings List next month.
THE BIGGER PICTURE: The U-17 squad was selected following rigorous trials in the three regional training centres in the capital city, Jeddah and Dammam. More than 300 players auditioned during the selections. Some players were selected after they impressed in the inaugural Schools’ League. Five of the selected 28 players are already plying their trade in the Women's Premier League.
WHAT THEY SAID? "In football that means our national teams regardless of male or female get equal pay in terms of daily allowance while on national duty, they train on the same pitches, stay in the same type of accommodation, and use the same equipment. The establishment of the U-17 team today is yet another sign of our strong commitment to women’s sports, and football in specific. Having been selected to host AFC Asian Cup 2027 in Saudi Arabia, our commitment now lies on our bid to host the AFC Women’s Asian Cup in 2026. We invite everyone to visit our country to see for themselves how the country’s transformation is impacting daily lives and the role sport is playing across all areas of society," stated Yasser Al Misehal, President of SAFF.
DID YOU KNOW? Sports for schoolgirls have seen a massive boost under Vision 2030 with over 200,000 girls practising sports every week.
IN THREE PHOTOS:SAFFSAFF
WHAT NEXT? The U-17 team have already completed their first training camp and are set to begin their second on February 9 in Riyadh.