Hibs Women: Hibs bring women's team under club umbrella and lay out professional target
Hibs have officially taken control of the club’s women’s team, with Dean Gibson’s side now coming under the same umbrella as the Easter Road men’s first team, development squad, and under-18s.
The move is the latest step on the pathway to professional status, with the Capital club eager to keep supporting the development and progression of women’s football.
Gibson and a number of women’s team players signed full-time professional contracts earlier this summer and the team is also scheduled to move back to Edinburgh following a season using Livingston’s Almondvale stadium as a home ground.
Hibs chief executive Ben Kensell said: “This is a really proud day for everyone involved with Hibernian FC. Embedding the women’s team within the club has always been a key ambition of ours, so we’re delighted we’ve been able to reach that goal ahead of the 2022/23 season.
“We made huge strides last season by breaking the Scottish attendance for women’s football with over 5,500 spectators watching the Edinburgh derby at Easter Road and it’s been clear to see the growth the game has made over the last few years. We have a clear vision for Hibs Women, and we want to build on their success to inspire a generation of young female players.
“We are also proud to see the team return to Edinburgh – this city should always be their home. We will fully support and invest in the women’s football strategy, like we have done this past season, with the ambition of eventually achieving European football and becoming a professional outfit.
“Hibernian FC is proud of being an inclusive club for all and I believe this shows real intent to put women’s football at the very heart of the club.
“We would also like to thank the Hibernian Community Foundation for all the work they’ve done over the years with the women’s team.”
Hibs have made significant investments behind the scenes to bring in additional employees in all areas to help maximise the growth of the women’s team. The Girls Academy will still fall under the jurisdiction of the Hibernian Community Foundation.
CEO Lewis Melee added: “The Hibernian Community Foundation has made a significant contribution to the growth and development of Hibs Women throughout the years with this culminating in reaching UEFA Women’s Champions League knock-out stages and winning domestic cups.
“The Foundation is delighted to support the move and looks forward to watching the women’s team develop further. This move not only enables the move towards professionalism but also allows the Hibernian Community Foundation to place greater focus on the Hibernian Community Girls Academy and recreational activity which will remain under the Foundation’s guidance ahead of the games programme returning this summer.”
Hibs were one of 20 clubs to be inducted into the inaugural Scottish Women’s Premier League in May, competing in SWPL 1. They face a trip to Celtic on the opening day of the season on August 7 2022, with the first home game coming against Hamilton the following week.
Hibs Women have also confirmed that season tickets for the team will be available at a cost of £100, with individual match tickets priced at £8.