The Palace Ladies have been handed a spot in the new Women’s Super League (WSL) twelve team semi-professional second tier after an about turn by the Football Association.
TEB reported at the end of May the terribly disappointing news at the decision by the FA to reject the bid by Palace to become part of the restructured WSL set up.
Off the back of that decision, there was much consternation by fans all across social media including the airing of our own strong views on the breaking news. The much publicised addition of Manchester United to the WSL was seen as the major upset but the clubs that were handed a spot over the Eagles were also questioned by many.
Meanwhile, Manchester United granted license in the second tier after starting up a new team. The decision stinks as usual. United should start from the bottom like all new teams. Effects credibility of women’s game in this country. Money talks #CPFC
— TEB 🦅 (@TheEaglesBeak) 28 May 2018
It is not clear exactly how this has come about but early indications are that a club (or clubs) have decided to drop out of the restructured league. That has left a window open for Palace with the FA finally making a decision that we all wanted to see.
A lot of credit must go Palace Ladies chairman Richard Spokes and his management team for the appeal that was submitted shortly after the initial decision by the FA. We understand that Crystal Palace chairman Steve Parish has backed the club all the way and has been instrumental in the whole appeal process alongside Richard and his team.
After working with the @PalaceLadiesFC for a few years now, we know the disappointment that will hit everyone involved. This decision is a major setback and leaves a real sour taste in the mouth but it will be channelled in the right way to become stronger.
— TEB 🦅 (@TheEaglesBeak) 28 May 2018
There has to be special mention to Palace fan groups and fans themselves for their support throughout this whole saga as the sharing of opinion and complete support of the Palace Ladies has certainly not gone unnoticed.
Speaking exclusively to TEB after receiving confirmation from the FA at their change of mind, Richard said;
“Throughout what has been an exceptionally difficult month or so following the initial decision by the Football Association, the support of the Palace fans and club as a whole actively led by Steve Parish, has been simply amazing. Without a doubt, the outcome announced today has been hugely effected by this. We would like to sincerely thank them all.”
Manager Dean Davenport was equally buoyant and thankfull at the news;
“Obviously you never want to take advantage of others misfortunes, but as a club we fully deserve this outcome. The hard work of the chairman, through to the committee along with Steve Parish and Phil Alexander, it has been amazing and this along with the support of our fantastic fans and media have put us in this position. The whole club have pulled together and will now be out there for everyone to see, that we are one club. We are proud at Palace and will work hard for what we deserve.”
While there is jubilation at the U-turn, it comes at a cost with a couple of players having already left the club after the decision to join clubs that had already secured a WSL spot.
Regardless, the news is welcomed by TEB and fans alike. While many will no doubt say it should have been the decision made in the first place, we can now all look forward to seeing the Palace Ladies representing the club in the WSL in this up and coming season.
Congratulations to the Palace Ladies on achieving WSL status. TEB is thoroughly looking forward to continuing our close links with the club for what is a very exciting future ahead.