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Scrosoppi expanding to field a Women’s Championship team in 2024

By League1 Ontario staff, 12/11/23, 9:45AM EST

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The Men’s Premier Division runners-up have acquired Pickering’s women’s license to grow their female program.

Scrosoppi women's player training

Scrosoppi women's player training. Photo: Scrosoppi

Toronto, ON – (December 11, 2023) – Scrosoppi FC will compete in the 2024 League1 Ontario Women’s Championship division having been awarded the women’s license formerly held by Pickering FC.

Acquiring this license allows Scrosoppi to expand their women’s program which, in addition to age-group youth squads, fielded a team in the South West Conference of the Women’s Reserve Division in 2023.

Former license holders Pickering withdrew from both the L1ON Men’s and Women’s Premier Divisions after the 2022 season and the competition board began welcoming applications to acquire their licenses in April this year, both being transferred separately.

The 2023 Premier Division table was split to decide the top two tiers for L1ON in 2024, and due to these licenses not being represented on the field this past season, Scrosoppi will automatically play at Women’s Championship level next year.

Named after the patron saint of footballers, Luigi Scrosoppi, the club were founded in 2020 and made their L1ON debut in men’s competition the following year. They finished 12th in the Men’s Premier Division in 2022 and top of the regular-season standings in 2023, reaching the final of the playoffs and confirming their Men’s Premier spot for next year.

Now Scrosoppi are hoping to use this success to inspire the growth of their women’s program.

Shayne Griffin, Technical Director of Scrosoppi, said: “Globally, the women's game has developed tremendously and there's a real push that women are represented equally, but we wanted to make sure that we did it organically in a way that we can develop some of our own teams and graduate them into the League1 environment.

“We were fortunate enough to bring in John Yacou who is the head coach of our men's team. He transformed the mentality and the culture of our League1 Men's program and was also the League1 Ontario Women's Coach of the Year in 2019. He will be managing our Women’s Championship team as well.

“We have a very supportive ownership group and they understand the pathway and what it takes to be successful; we've shown that on the men's side and they were very supportive in allowing us to also create that on the women's side this year.”

Matthew Braithwaite, Managing Director of League1 Ontario, said: “We are delighted to welcome Scrosoppi to the Women’s Championship for 2024.

“Scrosoppi’s recent transformation in the Men’s Premier Division shows the high standards that the club sets for players and staff, and now they have a chance to replicate this recent success in the women’s divisions.

“We have enjoyed working with Scrosoppi since they joined L1ON and are excited to help them pursue their aspirations in growing their female program, by providing a platform for their players to not only develop, but show their potential in the global game.”

The result of the Pickering FC men’s license will be announced in due course.