Bronze and Williamson praise Lionesses’ Euros legacy as PM pledges to provide equal football access for schoolchildren | The Sun

LUCY BRONZE hailed the Lionesses' legacy as the government pledged to provide equal sports access for school pupils.

The England star welcomed the move that will see schools asked to provide two hours of PE for girls and boys per week. 

This includes girls having equal access to all sports at school including football.

It follows the Lionesses’ open letter to Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss, spearheaded by Lotte Wubben-Moy and sent days after their historic Euros triumph. 

Last August all 23 members of Sarina Wiegman’s squad called on then prime ministerial candidates to ensure football is offered as part of PE to all girls at school.

Bronze, 31, said: "It's nice to think we played a small part with the Euros and we’re able to create a legacy to help make changes and help with equity within women's football and women's sport in general.

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"Hopefully we can keep pushing to make these changes, whether it's in inner city areas, getting more facilities, resources, or pushing the curriculum in schools to help girls get to play the sport that we grew up loving so much.

"It's important that sports be made an important part of people's lives because it's generally just good for you."

Bronze was sharing her thoughts as PM Sunak and education secretary Gillian Keegan announced a revamped school sport action plan. 

The plan has been backed by investment including £600 million in funding for the PE and sport premium over the next two academic years.

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The premium is used by schools to support improvements to the quality of their PE and sports education.

At present 67 per cent of all schools and 41 per cent of secondary schools provide football equally to girls in PE  lessons. 

And 46 per cent of schools deliver the same extracurricular sports opportunities as boys.

Bronze added: "That's where schools can play a big part.

"This was part of the letter we wrote after the Euros (calling for) increasing the time that girls can have to play football and other sports as well in general.

"It's important that sports be made an important part of people's lives because it's generally just good for you."

Lionesses captain Leah Williamson, 25, said: "The (Euros) success of last summer has inspired so many young girls to pursue their passion for football.

"We see it as our responsibility to open the doors for them to do so and this announcement makes that possible.

"This is the legacy that we want to live much longer than us as a team. 

"On behalf of all the Lionesses players, we'd like to thank our teammate Lotte Wubben-Moy as a driving force behind this transformational change.

"We couldn’t be prouder to stand alongside her and we all look forward to seeing the impact this legacy creates."

The government says schools will be offered strengthened guidance on how to spend the funding including guidelines on equal access. 

Those who are successful in providing opportunities will be awarded through via the Schools Game Mark. 

This is a system which assesses parity in the provision of PE and extracurricular sports activities. 

FA’s chief executive said: “The magic of last summer’s Euros victory can now  live on with a legacy that has the ability to change the future of women’s football and positively  impact society. 

"Equal access for girls is one of the FA’s strategic ambitions and for such progress to be made is a  very proud day. 

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"We’re all extremely grateful to the players for using their voice to deliver change.

"We would like to place on record our thanks to the government for the positive measures  announced today."

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