Back to Press Releases 10 FEBRUARY 2016

Manchester City Womens FC Face Sister Club For First Time

The Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy (FBMA) and AABAR Investments (aabar) bring City Football Group’s women’s teams to Abu Dhabi

Manchester City Women’s Football Club will return to Abu Dhabi for their 2016 pre-season training camp alongside Melbourne City Women’s FC. 

The City Football Group sister clubs will face each other in the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy Challenge on Wednesday 17 February at New York University’s Abu Dhabi Campus.

The fixture will be broadcast live at 14:00 (GMT) on both Club’s online channels as well as Abu Dhabi Sports 1 giving fans across the globe the chance to see the two women’s teams in action. 

Both teams have enjoyed recent success with Melbourne City crowned Westfield W-League Premiers and Champions, and Manchester City qualifying for the UEFA Women’s Champions League for the first time in late 2015. 

As part of MCWFC Pre-Season Training supported by Aabar, the UAE’s under-14 women’s team together with the UAE Women’s Football Committee will participate in a series of technical football clinics delivered by coaches from Manchester City Women. During the sessions participants will have the opportunity to train with, and learn from, professional female footballers who play at the highest level of the women’s game. 

Facilitated through the Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy, medical and sports science practitioners from the UAE will shadow experts from Manchester City Women to further study techniques and skills that can be incorporated into their working practice to benefit a host of female athletes in the UAE. 

For the second successive year Aabar Investments logo will be featured on the training kit of Manchester City Women’s FC. The organisation also continues to support City Football Schools, Manchester City Football Club’s network of international Academies.

In addition to working with Aabar and FMBA in inspiring more girls to play football, this training camp will be ideal preparation for MCWFC ahead of their inaugural season in the UEFA Women’s Champions League. It will also be a fitting end to a memorable season for our newly crowned W-League Champions Melbourne City Women’s FC.

Gavin Makel, Head of Women’s Football at Manchester City

As our main focus we look to ensure that sport is an element of daily life for women in the UAE, and so we are extremely pleased that the UAE women’s football community will have the chance to partner with and learn from two elite women’s teams that play at the highest international level. We hope that their visit culminating in the FBMA Challenge will encourage even more girls and women to participate in football which has already become an emblematic sport in our nation.

Raysa Al Ketbi, Operations Manager, Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy

Aabar Investments is thrilled to be able to continue its support of Manchester City Women’s Football Club in bringing them back to Abu Dhabi for their second pre-season, in line with our commitment to empowering female athletes here in the UAE and globally. We are proud that our relationship with the Club can benefit the UAE Women’s National Team

Raysa Al Ketbi, Operations Manager, Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy


For more information, please contact:

Elliot Ward 
MCWFC Communications ManagerT: +44 161 438 7822 
M: +44 7720 342 121
[email protected]

About Manchester City Women’s Football Club:

Formerly known as Manchester City Ladies FC, the club was founded in 1988 by City in the Community. In the 25 years since then, their affiliation with the men’s team has taken various forms, culminating in the statement of a formal partnership with Manchester City in August 2012. The Club was granted entry to the FA Women’s Super League in April 2013 and subsequently re-launched as Manchester City Women’s Football Club in January 2014.

The Club mirrors and benefits from its association with its male equivalent and is structured in all aspects of its operations to take advantage of the resources of the wider organisation – from community programmes, to youth development, scouting, coaching, sports science, digital coverage and first team football operations.

In its inaugural season under Head Coach Nick Cushing, Manchester City Women’s Football Club made history when they clinched their first ever trophy, the FA WSL Continental Cup. In the 2015 campaign the Club finished second place in the FA WSL and with it secured UEFA Women’s Champions League football for the 2016 season.

About Melbourne City Women’s Football Club:

Melbourne City FC commenced its inaugural Westfield W-League campaign in October 2015, after Football Federation Australia confirmed the Club’s application for entry into the women’s domestic competition in May 2015.

The team, led by Head Coach Joe Montemurro, finished the regular season with a 100 per cent record, winning 12 consecutive matches and clinching the Premier’s Plate. The team also claimed the competition’s Championship, defeating Sydney FC 4-1 in January’s Grand Final, to secure a historic double in the team’s first season.

The W-League team is based at Melbourne’s City Football Academy where it has access to state-of-the-art facilities and trains on the Club’s Elite and Academy Pitches at La Trobe University.

In its inaugural season, Melbourne City FC’s W-League team was represented by Australian internationals Lisa De Vanna, Laura Alleway, Steph Catley and Larissa Crummer, Scottish Internationals Kim Little and Jennifer Beattie – who joined on a season loan from Melbourne’s sister club Manchester City – and Welsh international Jess Fishlock.

About Aabar Investments PJS:

Headquartered in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, Aabar Investments PJS is a diversified investment company.  Aabar's mandate is to invest across industry sectors with significant growth potential, fulfilling the investment strategy of the government of Abu Dhabi. These sectors include real estate development, financial services, energy, commodities and aerospace, with many of its investments being made by way of international partnerships and alliances.

About The Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy (FBMA):

The Fatima Bint Mubarak Ladies Sports Academy (FBMA) is a non-for-profit government entity headed by its Chairperson Fatima Bint Hazza Bin Zayed Al Nahyan. The academy is dedicated to promoting and facilitating women’s sports in the UAE from its capital Abu Dhabi.

FBMA strives to make sports an element of daily life for UAE national women, through the three areas of Sports Events, Community Activities, and Education & Research

The academy aims to set Abu Dhabi on the global map of female sports by hosting a number of international competitions, tournaments and events. Some of which have already been granted spots on the calendars of international federations.

As its main stream of activity the academy, in its efforts to maintain continuous engagement with the community offers open trainings in a number of different sports, in secure, safe and, private environments. The academy operates these trainings in collaboration with the relevant federations.

It is within the academy’s mission to eventually make all sports available for women to practice in such environments.

With a view to identify and fill the educational gaps that might exist around physical activity in the country, the FBMA has established a dedicated Education and Research Department. Aiming at regular and structured interaction with Emirati society, the Department hosts a series of monthly seminars and sports trainings, while it also runs a number of research projects and case studies that examine the current landscape of women sports in UAE and Abu Dhabi in particular.