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Northern Ireland women and Irish FA set for talks over equal pay and to make Windsor Park their home


Lauren Wade after Northern Ireland's Euro 2022 exit

Lauren Wade after Northern Ireland's Euro 2022 exit

Getty Images

Lauren Wade after Northern Ireland's Euro 2022 exit

Key talks are to take place within the next few weeks over equality for Northern Ireland’s female footballers.

The Irish FA is well aware that they must capitalise on the unique situation presented by the Women’s Euro 2022 Finals and will discuss putting them on a par with their male counterparts in two hugely important ways — equal pay and playing all future home matches at Windsor Park.

The current squad is a key element of their plans to build upon the momentum rather than see it grind to a halt after bowing out of the tournament following Friday night’s 5-0 defeat to hosts England.

Previously the players haven’t pursued equal pay — many played for years without payment before a structure was put in place by the IFA within the last five years — but it is understood this is now viewed by the Association as a medium-term priority after the history-making qualification.

More immediate is a move to stage all games at Windsor, with the players expressing a desire to make it their permanent home.

Last year the Scottish FA announced that Hampden Park would host all of their women’s fixtures and Northern Ireland have played two of their last four matches at Windsor Park.

There is a growing opinion that there is no longer another stadium within Northern Ireland with either a big enough capacity or one that is fit for purpose following the increased interest in the women’s team after their qualification for the finals.

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