Singapore Women’s Premier League returns after two years with first-ever title sponsor
The league returns for its 21st season after its two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Singapore Women’s Premier League will make its return this year after a two-year hiatus, this time with a first-ever title sponsor.
The top women’s football league in Singapore will be branded the Deloitte Women’s Premier League, said the Football Association of Singapore (FAS) on Wednesday (May 4).
Deloitte and the FAS signed a three-year deal, with an option for two more years, worth more than $300,000. Prize money for the WPL champions will increase by five times to $25,000.
The 2022 season will kick-off on May 28 and feature seven clubs: Albirex Niigata (S), Balestier Khalsa, Hougang United, Lion City Sailors, Tanjong Pagar United, Tiong Bahru and Still Aerion.
The league had been on hiatus for the past two seasons due to COVID-19.
WPL teams can register up to 25 players, with a maximum of four foreign players and a minimum age of 16 years old. The league will also continue to follow a ‘home’ and ‘away’ round-robin format, and clubs will not face relegation for the next three seasons.
Clubs will also undergo a licensing programme to fulfil five pillars of sporting, infrastructure, legal, administration and personnel, and finance to provide stability and structure for staff and players. The clubs will undergo a two-year education phase before the system is enforced in 2024.
FAS President Lim Kia Tong said: “The FAS has taken the opportunity during this time to evolve the league with an increased number of clubs, a more competitive format and structured support provided for the teams to elevate the standard of football of our local female players.”
With the help from the FIFA COVID-19 relief plan and the Unleash the Roar! project, all seven clubs will also receive a subsidy and dedicated training facility.
Deloitte and FAS are also in discussions to extend the Deloitte Ignite program for both men and women football players, which will give them more work opportunities during and after their football careers.
FAS President Mr Lim added: “We believe that this sponsorship will not only elevate but evolve women’s football and increase interest in the sport from the grassroots to the elite level.”