Keeper Clare Edmondson calls it a day
United Ladies will have a new face in goal for the coming season after keeper Clare Edmondson made the decision to hang up her gloves.
An almost ever-present in the United Ladies team since it was founded Clare has been a great asset to the Club over recent seasons, having produced countless match winning saves at crucial times.
The keeper saved in the penalty shootout en route to United winning the Cumberland FA Women’s County Cup in 2015, and as a show of her dedication to the Lady Cumbrians played the 2016 Final in a hockey mask having suffered a serious injury during a league game just weeks prior.
Edmondson has built a reputation as a highly respected keeper in the North West Womens Regional League over recent seasons. Her dedication to the Club has been second to none, often making the long journey back up from work commitments in London on a Sunday morning to play for United in the afternoon.
United Ladies goalkeeping coach Jordan Carrigan said of her devotion to the Club: “Clare has been a real pleasure to work with during her time with us. Her excellent commitment - training in hail, freezing temperatures and mud bath conditions - really shows out on the pitch during games where she is a real leader from the back.
"Clare will be a big miss to the team as she inspires great confidence in her defenders with her shot stopping ability and constant communication - two key attributes for any keeper. I'm sure we will still see her helping out around the team as she is now a good friend of everyone involved. Thank you Clare for all of your commitment over the past few years.”
Edmondson’s retirement means that the Lady Cumbrians are on the hunt for a goalkeeper to join the team for the coming season. Regional league experience is desired but not essential, and anybody interested in joining the team should contact Manager Tracy Gannon by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
The United Ladies gaffer said: “We have known for about a season now that Clare was thinking about hanging up her gloves. She has been a real stalwart and great Vice Captain but as with most grassroots players the management of injuries and how they start affecting working life has to be addressed.
"Clare has been suffering from a back problem over the last twelve months off and on and has been working with our physios, so it has been something we have monitored and talked about over the last year. As Clare's job involves a lot of driving and lifting there was always going to come a time where the balance tipped.
"I know it was with a heavy heart that she made this decision to retire but we all fully support her in it and know we have a really tough job in replacing her. It will also be a sad day for me when the first game of the season arrives and I wont be putting her name on the team sheet.
“She will be a great loss to the team of course, but her retirement presents a great opportunity for a goalkeeper to join our vibrant squad and play regular regional league football. We are lucky at Carlisle United Ladies to have our own dedicated goalkeeping coach which just demonstrates how much importance we place on the development of our players in this position. I would welcome any players interested in joining the Club for the coming season to get in touch.”
The Cumbrians play in the North West Women’s Regional League Division One North. Home games are held on Sunday afternoons at Creighton Rugby Club with two mid-week training sessions. Pre-season training is currently underway.
For more information on the team follow them on Twitter, @CUFCLADIES, or like them on Facebook /CarlisleUnitedLadiesFC.