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AFC Fylde have reversed the decision to disband their women’s team.
News of a restructure that will keep the women’s side going comes four weeks after Fylde said the team would disband because of the coronavirus pandemic.
It seemed they would be the first semi-professional or professional team in the top 40 clubs in the English women’s game to fold because of coronavirus.
But Fylde will carry on next season in the third tier – the National League Northern Premier Division.
As part of the restructure, assistant manager Kim Turner will step up to manage the team alongside club captain Danielle Young, who will become player/co-manager.
Turner told BBC Radio 5 Live: “The club got a lot of media attention, which was great for us. The one thing we really wanted was just to a conversation to see how we could make it work instead of just getting rid of it, and they were willing to listen.
“It’s been the craziest three weeks within a crazy time that’s going on anyway, and the fact we’ve got this turned round and the girls can stay together means so much.”
Former boss Conrad Prendergast will move away from the women’s side to work with AFC Fylde’s academy.
The women’s team will play their home games going forward at AFC Fylde’s former home at Coronation Road, Kirkham.
AFC Fylde, who changed their name from Kirkham & Wesham in 2008, moved to their new home at Mill Farm in 2006.
In a video interview with the club connection, Fylde chairman David Haythornthwaite said: “It’s fantastic news and something I’m delighted about.
“Right from the very beginning when I started to try to build a Fylde brand, it’s always been my aim to make it more than just men’s football here.”
Tiers three to seven of England’s domestic women’s leagues were declared null and void at the end of March.
The Women’s Super League and Women’s Championship ended with immediate effect on Monday, with the title, promotion and relegation issues still to be decided.