The UK’s first ever statue of a female footballer, trailblazing winger Lily Parr, will be unveiled next month at the National Football Museum.
Nearly a century after the first women’s football match, played between combined XIs of the best players in England and France, the life-size bronze work was commissioned by FA sponsors Mars to “inspire the Lionesses” at this summer’s World Cup in France.
Parr, a left-sided player who scored nearly 1000 goals in a career spanning 32 years, is described in the history books as having boasted a ferocious shot and the ability to score from anywhere.
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Hannah Stewart was chosen to sculpt the statue.
Marzena Bogdanowicz, Head of Commercial and Marketing, Women’s Football at The FA said: “Women’s football is in a very strong place today with the England team helping us to drive participation and interest at every level. We have come a long way since Lily Parr’s days and she deserves recognition as a true pioneer of the sport.
“Lily Parr was the first woman to enter the Football Hall of Fame, an iconic achievement in itself, so it’s only fitting that she takes her place alongside other football legends and becomes the first woman to be celebrated with a statue in her honour.”
Gemma Buggins of Mars said: “Lily Parr was the heroine of her time in the sporting world. It’s an honour to be able to recognise her and commemorate the inspirational woman that she was.
“With England’s Lionesses preparing for this summer’s tournament, we hope the unveiling of the first ever female footballer statue spurs them on and gives them the motivation to go all the way!”
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