Cecelia Nyama named GARFA Women’s Best Player at STAPH Awards

Ridge City FC Women’s Cecelia Nyama has been named Best Player at the Sports Teams and Professional Honorary (STAPH) Awards for the Greater Accra Regional Football Association’s Women Division One League for the 2020/2021 season.

This is the first of many accolades that Cecelia aims to achieve as a professional footballer.
Cecelia achieves this feat after helping Ridge City FC Women clinch bronze in its maiden season since the club’s establishment.

Cecelia, who wears the number 8 jersey for the club, featured in 8 games for the club during the season, finding the net 15 times

“First of all I give thanks to the almighty for this recognition among my peers. Secondly I thank the management of my darling club Ridge City for giving me the opportunity. Thirdly I thank the stakeholders of GARFA Women for honoring me,” the playmaker posted on social media.

Cecelia says that she is motivated to even work harder in the next season.

Several of her teammates, including staff of the club, have taken turns to congratulate their colleague.

The regular starter for Coach Louis Ano-Ampofo’s side has already told club media that she is working hard to earn a call-up to the senior women’s national team.

Match Day – Army Ladies FC vs Ridge City FC

It’s Game Day. Army Ladies FC vs Ridge City FC at 3:00pm, El Wak Stadium.


Army Ladies FC2Draw
Ridge City Women FC2Draw


El Wak Stadium
El-wak stadium, Giffard Road, Cantonments, Accra, La-Dade-Kotopon Municipal District, Greater Accra Region, 10408, Ghana

A Wrap of the Ridge City Women’s Football Initiative

The Ridge City Women’s Football Initiative sponsored by The Embassy of Switzerland in Ghana ended yesterday at the Mary Mother of Good Counsel School with a Mini Tournament.

The four month series of programs began with the program, Branding in Women’s Football which was spearheaded by the Co-Founder of Ridge City Women Football Club, Cyril Gockel. This program took women’s football enthusiasts as well as female footballers through the various aspects of branding and marketing in football such as the need for social media presence and the importance of branding in the world of football.

The Laws of the Ghana Game facilitated by Frank Delali Awutey was the second program in the initiative and was based on major FIFA laws in football and the new changes made in football. Experienced coach, Coach Eric Antwi took participants through a 5-week coaching course dubbed Coaching 101. Certificates of participation were awarded to the young female coaches by the sponsors of the program.

Careers in Football, another initiative in the program, had a panel of women in sports sharing their career experiences with the audience and participants. Ghanaian International footballer, Jennifer Cudjoe had an interactive session with the players. Other panelists included, Akosua Amoo, Juliet Bawuah, Cleopatra Nsiah Nkatie and Susan Sarpomaa Owusu-Ansah

The finale of the initiative was a 7-a-side Mini Tournament of 4 teams with invited players from clubs all around Accra who came in support of the project and in the spirit of having fun.

The winning team, The Blue Team, won not only medals to signify their win but also gifts from Ambassador Philipp Stalder who also gave his closing remark expressing his gratitude for the success of the entire program.

Women’s Football Initiative-Laws of the Game

The Ridge City women’s football initiative program continued with Phrank Delali Awutey on laws of the Game on Friday 11th October at the Base camp East Legon and 18th October held on online.

He spoke to the audience on topics ranging from laws of the game on the field, Player status and Age cheating in women’s football.

Christine Burkhard and George Appiah were present from Swiss Embassy in Ghana to offer their support.

Part two of the program with Mr.Awutey was held online with participants asking questions via a Twitter Questions and Answer section before proceeding to the zoom section
Watch video below

FIFA extends 5 substitutes a game to 2021

The Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) has settled on maintaining the decision of permitting 5 substitutes for a match till 2021 due to the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on football.

A press release from the world football governing body details the reasons for the extension adding that further decisions from stakeholders and Directors of the International Football Association Board (IFAB) will be kept under constant review to ensure appropriate action is taken.

‘’Following the decision taken on 8 May 2020 to give competitions scheduled to be completed in 2020 the option of allowing teams to use up to five substitutes, the IFAB Board of Directors had agreed to review whether to extend this option further. On the basis of this in-depth review, which included stakeholder feedback and an analysis of the impact of COVID-19 on competition calendars, the IFAB Board of Directors has extended the option to competitions scheduled to be completed by 31 July 2021 and to international competitions scheduled in July/August 2021″. The presser said.

“The main reason for the temporary amendment to Law 3 – The Players was the impact on player welfare of competitions being played in a condensed period and in different weather conditions. The recent review has shown that the reasons for the temporary amendment remain valid and the impact on player welfare is likely to continue into 2021 due to various factors, including:

  • Some competitions which resumed in 2020 may have a shorter-than-usual recovery/preparation period before the start of their next season.
  • For many competitions, the 2020/21 season will involve matches being played in a condensed period due to a delayed start and the inability to end later than usual because of major international tournaments.

There are no changes to the details of the temporary amendment to the Laws of the Game, which will allow for a maximum of five substitutes to be used per team. However, to avoid disruption to the game, each team will only have three opportunities to make substitutions, although substitutions made at half-time are not counted as one of the three opportunities.

The decision on whether to apply this temporary amendment remains at the discretion of each competition organizer.

The changing impact of the pandemic on football will be kept under constant review to ensure appropriate action is taken in the future in relation to this temporary amendment.’’

FIFA had earlier announced that it would temporarily allow leagues the option of granting teams five substitutions per game as opposed to three and will last until the end of the calendar year (2020), a temporary measure to help cope with potential fixture congestion in the aftermath of the novel COVID-19 outbreak.

Ghana loses out on women’s world cup Solidarity fund

Three African countries benefit from FIFA Women’s World Cup Club Solidarity Fund which was launched in 2019 to reward clubs for providing players for the success of the tournament held in France.

The money which stands at 8.46 million US Dollars will be distributed to some eight hundred and twenty-two professional and grassroots clubs to encourage football clubs in their quest to develop talent for the women’s game.

Among these clubs feature twenty-six from Cameroon, 35 clubs from South Africa and 21 from Nigeria received a total of $205,580.

A FIFA statement reads ”The payments reward clubs for providing players with a professional football pathway, while encouraging and incentivising football clubs to continue developing talent in the women’s game,”

”The money is paid out with the intention of enabling beneficiary clubs to create a high-performance environment for the best players in the world and to invest in developing women’s football at grassroots level.

France 2019 is the first FIFA Women’s World Cup where professional and grassroots clubs have benefitted from receiving solidarity funding, which was introduced by FIFA to directly support and reward clubs in the development of players who play at the tournament.

Based on the principle of rewarding clubs for providing players with a professional football pathway, 50 per cent of the funding has been distributed to clubs that released players for the FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019.

Chief women’s football officer at FIFA Sarai Bareman added, “Building on the success of the FIFA Women’s World Cup last year, the solidarity funding distributed as a result of the tournament will provide much-needed additional financial support for many women’s football clubs around the world,”

“With USD 1 billion already committed to women’s football over the next four-year cycle in the lead-up to the FIFA Women’s World Cup in 2023, the solidarity funds distributed will play an important role in providing more opportunities for women and girls to play football, as well as rewarding and giving back to 822 training and grassroots clubs for the vital role they played in developing the stars of last summer’s FIFA Women’s World Cup.

“At a time when many clubs around the world impacted by the current coronavirus pandemic, FIFA is looking to continue the long-term investment we are making in the women’s game, as well as the momentum and the interest generated last summer.

“Through the additional development funding that has now been distributed, we hope that this supports clubs and MAs in the important role they play in the growth of women’s football and will encourage them to continue to invest in the sport in the future.

“The growth of women’s football requires a joint effort at all levels if we are to build a strong and sustainable future for the women’s game. Only together can we realise the full potential of women’s football and truly bring the game to all.”

WPL Clubs to receive $10,000 each from FIFA COVID relief Fund.

The Ghana football Association following its Executive Council meeting has announced that Ghana Women’s Premier League clubs will take home $160,000 from the Covid-19 fund this month and additional $26,000 for NHIS registration.

The 16 top flight clubs will get $10,000 each from the fund, as the 72 women’s Division One Regional Clubs will disburse $60,000 among themselves.

The COVID relief fund by FIFA is expected to release pressure from the clubs from financial difficulties caused by Covid 19 which forced the Ghana football association to being the 7th edition of the women’s league to a halt as measures from Government to manage the spread of the pandemic.

The WPL teams are already on a YEA relief fund which will see each player pocket 500gh at the end of the month.

The FA also stated, over 3500 players and technical staff from the elite clubs are expected to enroll on the NHIS scheme, with each team expected to register not more than 50 personnel which includes footballers, technical team and management members on the package .

Announcing the payment plan for the FIFA COVID-19 Relief Fund, the Ghana FA added that $26,000 has bee set aside to cater for the registration and other logistical activities of all the players and technical staff of the three sectors on the National Health Insurance Scheme.

2019/20 Women’s premier league season kicks off.

When Kurt Okraku, Ghana FA new President walked onto the pitch at McDan park at La to kick the ball to usher in the 2019/20 Women’s premier league season, there were respectable eyeballs watching.

By the standards of the Women’s game in the West African country, the numbers were unprecedented, the kick off never seen before, too.

There are those who believe the presence of the first citizen of the country’s football drew the numbers, but week in and out, people turned out in their numbers to watch matches at venues across the country.

Others, whom hitherto had no interest in the game, paid attention via livestreams.

Never before has there been such attention given to Women’s football, and never before has women’s football had such a platform to be seen by masses who do not make it to the stadia for varied reasons.

With the wealth of talent and quality always undermined, the two months of league football offered an opportunity to change attitudes.

The 7th edition of the Women’s premier league which appeared to have a well laid down plan to take off, drove that message.

It made great strides in the early days of 2020. Attendances at games increased game by game, media hype and euphoria grew higher with matches viewed on Facebook setting a record of 5.8k views.

Kurt Okraku and Hillary Boateng, head of the women’s league committee, had just started, but won hearts. Aficionados emerged as matches drew bigger audience. There was a sense that the now canceled football season could be a turning point.

This was a season that would propel the women’s game into wider consciousness, a season that provides an opportunity to not only build on the foundation but to surpass the achievement and break grounds.

But, the COVID-19 pandemic has left the game in unwarranted position. If the men’s game has suffered enormously, there will be a deeper and more far reaching consequences for the women’s game.

Confederation of African football (CAF), gave us an idea. When the continent’s football governing body took a decision to postpone men’s division of their competitions, they canceled the Women’s AFCON; a testimony of how the sport continue to lurk behind.

Ghana FA has keen interest in growing women’s game in Ghana with a plan of doubling the number of women and girls taking part in football, and improving commercial prospects.

When the Youth Employment Agency (YEA), made available a financial package to support 1000 athletes for the next half a year, the GFA handed it to the girls.

The FA President described it as a Game Changer, but the real Game Changer, is the impact this would have on women who desire to be part of football, the real Game Changer, is the message sent to the world that, women’s football is core for the FA.

If there’s more, women would have their share of the cake, but at this point those in charge of football, are grappling with how to recover from the havoc caused by COVID-19.

The havoc that has left the development hanging by a tailor thread. The havoc, that has forced some football teams to be under a self induced ‘lockdown’.

Since COVID-19 showed its ugly head, some clubs have made little or no efforts to sustain the standards set to improve awareness about the existence of the league.

It was mandatory for all participating teams in the 2019/20 women’s league to have a social media page to keep their fans informed, engaged and entertained.

But, some teams killed that vibe even before football was halted; there were no updates on the club or players daily activities in absence of matches.

With many already not interested, this compounded the significant challenges women’s football faced such as branding and marketing which is key in getting investors on board.

Prior to the pandemic, elite women’s football was already facing poor pitches, lower wages or no wages at all according to Kurt Okraku; prize money and conditions were equally far behind the men’s teams.

More saddening is the fact that, teams rely on the FA for income, and this, clearly indicates the teams are underfunded when compared to men’s football.

COVID-19 has hit many businesses’ profits hard, leaving companies who previously had interest to invest in women’s football unable to, if this causes the pool of sponsors to shrink – a pool that is already small, the future of women’s football will remain under financial threat.

Steps to save the game?

Women’s football had faced tough times from the scratch, it is resilient. So, COVID-19 may not be a fatal blow.

Notwithstanding, swift and decisive action is needed to sustain the recent momentum and its growth.

Women’s football should be viewed as a core business and not as a goodwill gesture to the community, hence, taking their branding and marketing game a further level.

One of the elementary factors hampering female football was the players’ attitude.

These footballers are often on a short-term contracts and they juggle other jobs and family responsibilities alongside their football careers.

There are also the issues surrounding well-being that might be felt more acutely in the sector, but clubs must actively work to supports players.

Clubs should be entrepreneurial and innovative in their approaches to generating revenue, such as fundraising and a huge presence on the internet.

Official club websites and social media activities, might just sell them to the world.

An organisation which is not on the internet rapidly, then it’s more like lighting a candle and putting it under a basket.

There is a sustained demand for women’s football when the game restarts and the teams needs to keep high supporters interest to continue advancing a “new age” of women’ football.