Understanding our history

In 1921, The Football Association banned women from playing on FA-affiliated pitches. Effectively preventing professional and amateur football for women of all ages.

This ban lasted 50 years. In 1971 the ban was lifted following the formation of the Women’s Football Association a couple of years earlier. In 1975 our club was formed, we are the oldest female football club in Wales.

Over the years the club has taken on many guises and name changes.


The club was founded as Llanedeyrn L.F.C from a charity match. Local shopkeeper Malcolm Allen ran a local carnival and held an all-women’s football match. Several of the younger girls asked Malcolm to continue with the team. He then formed the club and entered them into the Southwest League.

Malcolm now lives in Australia and is still President of Cardiff L.F.C club today.

Photo of the team in 1980


The name was changed to Cardiff L.F.C.

Photo of the team in April 1985


The club linked up with Inter Cardiff F.C. to become Inter Cardiff Ladies and started playing at the Cardiff Athletic Stadium.

Photo from May 1993


The connection with Inter Cardiff was terminated and the club changed its name to Cardiff County L.F.C while affiliating with the Cardiff County Council.

Photo of the team in the late 1990’s


Then we became Cardiff City Ladies.

Photo from the late 1990’s


There were loose connections with the men’s club until 2004 when members voted against the men’s club’s proposals.

We kept the use of our Cardiff City name and kit colours. However, our crest is very different incorporating the Welsh red dragon instead.

Photo of the team in the early 2000’s

We have always been an independent club run solely by volunteers until September 2023 when we secured an investment and a co-ownership of the club.  This is a partnership committed to realising the club’s long-term vision of achieving a spot in the Women’s Super League and fostering more talent for the Women’s National Team.

We are still mainly run by volunteers apart from our head coach and some of the coaching/medical staff who are in paid employment. 

In September 2023, the club welcomed its first full-time First Team Manager and our current first team manager is Fern Burrage-Male.

As the club grows we anticipate that this structure will change as more people enter paid employed within the club.

Meeting the People behind it

Words from club founder Karen Jones

‘I was a founding member in 1975 aged 16 when we were called Llanedeyrn, Michele (Adams) joined us in 1976.’

‘I’m the Club Secretary and have been for many years. I am a founding member when the club first formed in 1975 from a local charity match. I played up until 2001 as a goalkeeper, then took on more of an administrative role as well as assisting Michele to coach the first team, and I coached the goalkeepers.’

‘Michele joined in 1976 after playing for other local clubs, she was a midfield player.  After she retired from playing Michele went into a coaching role and was the head coach of our 1st team for several years with massive success taking our club into what was then the National League amongst the giants of Chelsea, Arsenal Everton etc. She was also the Wales under 19s coach for 10 years. We both played for Wales for many years and Michele also captained her country.’

Karen Jones and Michele Adams have both received an MBE for their services to women and girls’ in football in Wales.

The Team Now

Our first team currently compete in the FA Women’s National League Southern Premier Division, competing with teams in the South of England.

In 2006 Cardiff City Ladies won the FA Women’s Premier League Southern Division and were promoted to the National Division for the first time. Relegated in the 2007–08 season, the club again were promoted to the National Division in 2010–11.

In the 2022-23 campaign we had a successful FA Cup run by reaching the last 16 – being the only non-professional side to do so and exiting the tournament at the same stage as some WSL (Women Super League) clubs, including Arsenal.

Because Cardiff City Ladies has won the Welsh Women’s Cup, the club has represented Wales played in the UEFA Women’s Cup. From 2004-10 we won the Welsh Cup on 12 occasions and for 6 of those went to Europe.

We have long term ambitions to reach the Barclays Women’s Championship. There is a healthy mix of experience and fresh talent within our squad. Many of our players have represented Wales at either youth or senior level – or both.

As a club, we have produced over 100 players for the Welsh team at all ages.

We run a successful under-14s section for girls and the Dragons Training Centre. Playing within a junior section is all about learning new skills and developing as players. We encourage team spirit, ethics and morals as well as making new friends and making sure that the girls have fun and enjoy their football all in a safe and welcoming environment.

All of our junior sections are part of the pathway into our senior 1st team – a pathway that current international players like Jess Fishlock and Sophie Ingle have all taken before moving into the professional game.

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