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TV show lifts lid on lesbian relationships in ‘inclusive’ Women’s Super League

Ella Braidwood February 15, 2019
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A BBC Three documentary has highlighted the same-sex relationships in the UK’s top female football league, the Women’s Super League.

The TV show, called Britain’s Youngest Football Boss, follows 19-year-old Jack Sullivan, who is managing director of West Ham United WFC, as his club competes in its first season in the Women’s Super League (WSL)—the UK’s top league for women’s football.

Episode four of the documentary, which aired on January 15, shows two Swiss international players—West Ham forward Alisha Lehmann and Chelsea striker Ramona Bachmann, who are girlfriends—playing against one another in the WSL back in November.

Girlfriends play against each other in Women’s Super League

West Ham lost 2-0 to Chelsea, with Bachmann scoring both goals.

The show sees the couple openly discussing their relationship.

“There are a lot of positives with having someone who does the same thing,” said Bachmann in the episode.

“I am not going out at the weekends because I have games, she knows what I am going through and I understand her as well.”

“I am not going out at the weekends because I have games, she knows what I am going through and I understand her as well.”

—Chelsea striker Ramona Bachmann

Heartwarmingly, Lehmann admits that Bachman was her “idol” when they first started playing together for the Swiss national team.

“She is really, really good, technical and fast. I am a little bit nervous but I think it will be a good game,” added Lehmann.

Women's Super League football players
Ramona Bachmann (left) and her girlfriendAlisha Lehmann, who play together in the Women’s Super League. (bachmann10/Instagram)

Sullivan, who is the son of West Ham United FC’s co-owner David Sullivan, noted the inclusivity in women’s football, explaining: “We’ve never had partner up against partner in the men’s game.”

And Gilly Flaherty, captain of West Ham United WFC, explained: “There’s quite a few openly gay football players, but I think we get quite a lot of openly gay female fans as well.”

She added: “It’s very inclusive.”

Women’s Super League and highest levels of women’s game have a number of openly gay or bisexual players

There are a number of openly lesbian or bisexual players at the top levels of women’s football, unlike in the men’s game, where homosexuality remains a taboo subject.

Casey Stoney, now manager of Manchester United WFC, came out as gay while she was captain of England.

Welsh player Jessica Fishlock, meanwhile, recently discussed how her experience of school was “hell” because of her sexuality.

More: football, lesbian, women's super league

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