Women's FA Cup seals record sponsorship deal with Vitality with prize fund set for review and Alex Scott as ambassador

THE Women’s FA Cup has sealed a record three-year sponsorship deal with Vitality ahead of the postponed quarter-finals of the 2019-20 competition.

Kelly Simmons, the FA’s director of the Women’s Game, revealed there has been a “significant investment” from the health and life insurance company.

And while she wasn’t able to disclose the exact figure, she confirmed the prize-fund will also be reviewed.

The winners of the women's competition currently receive £25,000, whereas the winning men's team will rake in an eye-watering £1.8MILLION next term.

The men's prize money was slashed in half from the £3.6m Arsenal received for beating Chelsea in August, due to the financial implications of Covid-19.

Simmons said: “This is obviously day one of a brand-new partnership so we need to look at where we can take this investment,

“And deliver the best value in terms of our aspirations around building and developing the women’s FA Cup. The prize fund will be part of that review.

“Bringing a major brand in like Vitality at this moment demonstrates the power of women’s football and where the game is, and that brands and other partners want to get involved.

"It’s been well documented we’ve had a lot of commercial interest in the WSL as well.

"So, I think it says strongly really where women’s football is at. It’s on a big growth trajectory."

Arsenal and England legend Alex Scott, was announced as Vitality's new ambassador this week.

The former right-back has won seven FA Cups with the Gunners and recalls lifting the trophy at Wembley after beating Chelsea in 2016.

She said: "I think the last time I won it with Arsenal I remember crying like a baby.

"It was that emotional for me and I knew I was coming towards the end of my career.

"So, to finally be able to play in the FA Cup, about seven times, and to finally get the showpiece game at Wembley now for the women,

"For me to walk those stairs and lift the trophy was really the highlight of my career.

"It's just that moment is what you dream of as a young kid to be able to play at Wembley in an FA Cup final.

"Even from my early days at Arsenal, we always knew that was a goal,

"You want to get to the FA Cup final because it always has been and always will be the showpiece event in women's football."

A peak audience of 2.2m watched Manchester City power to victory over West Ham in the 2019 final of the competition – with over 43,000 watchingat Wembley.

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