Sheffield United: Blades close-in on Olympic bow

Sheffield United Ladies are set to move to the Olympic Legacy Park. Photo by Glenn Ashley.
Sheffield United Ladies are set to move to the Olympic Legacy Park. Photo by Glenn Ashley.

Sheffield United Ladies could stage their first game at the Olympic Legacy Park early next month following talks between Bramall Lane, the City Council and the Football Association, it emerged last night.

Kevin McCabe, United’s co-owner, revealed Dan O’Hearne’s side hope to begin playing at the site within “the next three to four weeks” after admitting discussions about erecting temporary facilities have made good progress of late.

Kevin McCabe, Sheffield United's co-owner

Kevin McCabe, Sheffield United's co-owner

Although the timescale remains fluid, McCabe said the discussions underlined United’s commitment to the women’s game after officially adopting the Ladies team last year.

“There’s a possibility they could have a game there pretty soon,” McCabe, whose company Scarborough Group is developing a stadium on the site, said. “We’ve had positive meetings about it and this is something we are keen to see happen as quickly as possible.”

United Ladies, who will share the ground with Sheffield Eagles, reached the first round proper of the SSE Women’s FA Cup when they beat Leeds on penalties last weekend. McCabe, who instigated the move to bring them under the United umbrella, confirmed they will continue to train at the Steelphalt Academy when a permanent switch takes place.

McCabe, who has made no secret of his desire to see United Ladies competing in the FA Women’s Super League by 2022, explained that moving to an “arena of their own” would not only help promote the growth of the squad but confirm United’s status as a “club for the whole city.”

Sheffield United players celebrate their win over Leeds. Photo by Glenn Ashley.

Sheffield United players celebrate their win over Leeds. Photo by Glenn Ashley.

“The Ladies have made great strides forward and we want to see that continue,” he said. “The interest is growing both in terms of fans and the media. The women’s game can not and should not be ignored.”