Jill Scott's captaincy and government pledge for schools are more steps in the right direction for women's football - but there is so much still to be done
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Women's football has continued to make big strides this week, in the wake of last year's Euro 2022 success, but there's still plenty of work to do.
When England gyaldem did what the mandem couldn't in summer 2022, by defeating Germany in the biggest crown of any Euros tournament final, men or women, it ended 66 years of hurt.
Chloe Kelly's extra time winner kicked off huge scenes in Wembley and shone a huge light on the women's game in England like never before.
Sarina Wiegman's side have since sold out the national stadium for last year's friendly with USA and again for this April's 'Finalissima' against Brazil.
More games in the Women's Super League have been moved to men's stadiums this season and Mary Earps was named as the Best FIFA Women's Goalkeeper of the Year, as the good news continues to roll in.
On Wednesday, the government announced a package of more than £600 million over the next two years, as part of the legacy left by last summer's victory, in order to help equal school sport opportunities for girls.
Currently only 67% of all schools and 41% of secondary schools offer football equally to girls in PE lessons, with less than 50% giving options for extra curricular activities.
After the Euros, the government initially showed no consideration to helping change that, but they have been won over by an open letter written by 23 of the Euro winners.
Captain Leah Williamson said, "The success of the 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."
“The mandem couldn’t, so the gyaldem did”— SPORTbible (@sportbible) July 31, 2022
Shakespeare reincarnated 😂👏🏴 pic.twitter.com/2gqB3zQPtP
"To think that a young girl now will have equal access. An awful lot of the Lionesses have fallen in love with football at school."
Scott became a cult hero, and instantly recognisable, following her clash with a Germany player during the Euros final, and went on to enter and win I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here.
The former midfielder will get the chance to add to her celebrity status in June, when she captains the England team, against the World XI, at Soccer Aid.
The annual charity game, set to be held at Old Trafford this summer, became mixed gender a few years ago but Scott will be the first woman to wear the armband.
It's another great step in the right direction, despite the game not really mattering, as women footballers get to show off their skills in front of a huge sell out crowd and around 4 million watching at home, with Scott at the forefront.
Chelsea Women's manager Emma Hayes is also set to manage, with the 46-year-old often heralded as the woman who could be the first to manage in the men's professional game in England.
However, there is obviously still much more to do for women's football in this country, even if it is ahead of many others when it comes to equal pay for the national teams.
Earlier in the season, Chelsea and Liverpool were allowed to kick off in a WSL game that clearly should have been abandoned due to the frozen pitch.
However, the game did start, only to be called off five and a half minutes into the match, with both sides left fuming and everyone lucky to get away without an injury.
Teams at the top of men's football in this country would never have to go without undersoil heating and their health wouldn't have been risked.
Likewise, they'd never go into a game with semi-professional referees, which is what the WSL still has, meaning the quality is always going to be lower.
VAR is also missing from the women's domestic game at the moment. Whilst some would of course argue that it's a good thing, it does mean obvious mistakes are more thoroughly scrutinised and, as per the last point, that is more likely to happen with semi-pro officials.
Whilst more games are being held at the bigger stadiums, accessibility is still an issue for some teams, with Manchester United Women playing nearly an hour's drive from Old Trafford usually, and nearly two hours on public transport.
The prices for big games are also interesting, with some matches being given away for free, or as little as £5, which is mostly a positive.
However, those tickets can often be deemed cheap enough for someone to buy but then not bother turning up, there needs to be a balance where fans buy tickets and want to go, no matter what.
England Women will soon hopefully change their white shorts for a different colour, as the Canada team have already done and the LTA will also do at Wimbledon from this year.
Men's footballers can do more to champion the game as well, even if there has also been plenty of advancement in this area already.
West Ham United players wore shirts with the names of 'special women' in their lives on the back and, whilst one was in a Serena Williams shirt, many wore the words 'mum' or 'wife' on.
Likewise Leicester City put out a video of their players naming women who inspire them and all named their mum or their wife.
Whilst that's 'cute,' we have a duty to not just be able to name those in our families or directly around us as women who inspire us, and it couldn't be easier for footballers.
Anyone who plays for the England men's team for one should have been inspired by any member of Weigman's side, after all the gyaldem did what they couldn't.
With a few more steps towards equality and the development of a game that was banned for 50 years they can achieve even more in the future.