Thu 6 Jun, 2019

Scottish Greens parliamentary co-leader Alison Johnstone MSP has wished Scotland’s team well ahead of the Women’s World Cup getting underway tomorrow in France.

Shelley Kerr’s side kick-off their first-ever World Cup campaign on Sunday against England in Nice, after topping their qualifying group. Johnstone, herself once a middle distance athlete and coach, has backed the team to impress, but called for more investment in grassroots sport to sustain elite success. Her comments come after reports this week that Scottish councils have sold off more than 100 football pitches since 2010.

Alison Johnstone MSP said:

“Scotland’s women have already created history by qualifying for the World Cup, but they’ve shown with their quality and sportswomanship that they’ve a great chance of having a successful tournament and I join with everyone wishing them well.

“To build on their achievements, and those of other Scottish sportsmen and women, we must continue to invest in grassroots sport. It is alarming to hear news this week that more than 100 sports pitches have been sold off by Scottish councils since 2010, leaving some regions with virtually none at all. Top-level success is wonderful, but without easy-to-access local facilities for people to get into and improve at sport, it will be virtually impossible to sustain.  It also sets us back in efforts to encourage healthier, active lifestyles.  Two thirds of adults and over a quarter of kids don’t do enough physical activity, so at all levels of government we need to see this as a priority.”

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Alison Johnstone MSP said: