Wales coach Jayne Ludlow has been appointed as ambassador for the 2016/17 UEFA Women's Champions League final in her native Cardiff having won the title a decade ago at Arsenal.
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Wales coach Jayne Ludlow has been appointed as ambassador for the 2016/17 UEFA Women's Champions League final in Cardiff.
Ludlow was born around 30km from Cardiff and the former athletics, basketball and netball international started her football career at local club Barry Town. The highlight of her playing career was her 13 years at Arsenal, winning many trophies including the 2006/07 UEFA Women's Cup (predecessor to the UEFA Women's Champions League), which she lifted as captain.
Now the national coach, Ludlow will help promote the first UEFA women's club final to be held in Wales, played on 1 June at Cardiff City Stadium. "What a fantastic opportunity to raise the profile of the women's game in Wales and beyond," she said.
"It provides us with a massive opportunity to increase participation numbers and interest in Wales's national teams and domestic leagues.
"The 2017 final will offer all those involved in women's football in Wales the opportunity to see the top level of the game. For me, there's an added bonus: our younger national-team players will be inspired seeing first hand the pinnacle of women's club football.
"This competition, and the women’s game in general, has changed massively since my trophy win in 2007. Women's football is a growing sport and the standard is improving all the time. It will be an interesting final, and a real football spectacle when the final comes to Wales next year.
"The year [Ludlow and Arsenal won], 2007, was probably our most prolific year and certainly my favourite season as a player," Ludlow added. "We'd won a domestic quadruple and then to win the UEFA trophy was an unforgettable feeling. It was massive for the club and a very proud moment for all the players involved."