West Ham Ladies players have heaped praised on outgoing Director of Football, Julia Setford, who stepped down from her role after 12 years associated with the club. Captain Stacey Little led the tributes from the players after manager Julian Dicks and the West Ham Ladies confirmed the news on Twitter last month.
Little, who was amongst the scorers as the Hammers beat Exeter City Ladies 3-1 in the quarter final of the FA Women’s Premier League Plate competition earlier this month, said: ‘Julia was a very important part of this club and did a lot for it. I owe a lot to her. ‘She put her faith in me all those years ago as a central defensive midfielder which helped me develop to the player I am today.
‘I’ll never forget my first season when I was given manager’s player of the season. It was a dream come true.” ‘I’d like to thank her for all she has done for me and the rest of the girls. I’ll be sad to see her go.’ Centre back Danica Revell told Blowing Bubbles she was very sad to see Setford leave.
‘She has supported me throughout the five years I’ve been at the club,’ she said. ‘From the very start, she selected me for the first team when I was only 16 and I cannot thank her enough for that. ‘She’s a great person and she will be sorely missed not just by me but I know the other girls are disappointed to see her leave. It’s a great shame but I wish her all the best for the future.’
Striker Vicky Kinsman added: ‘If it wasn’t for Julia having faith in me then I wouldn’t be back here as it was down to her so I’m gutted she’s left as she was very supportive and always full of advice.’ Fellow Ladies player Vicky King said: ‘During Julia’s time at West Ham, she was a team mate, manager and most importantly, a good friend to me.
‘Her loyalty and dedication to the club through both good and bad has been second to none and her decision to leave is a void that won’t be filled. ‘The club won’t be the same without her and she will be sorely missed. I wish her all the very best” Manager Dicks, breaking the news on Twitter on January 19, said: ‘I would like to thank Julia Setford for all her hard work and help with me and @Westhamladies who decided to move on, I wish you well.
The West Ham Ladies tweeted shortly after: ‘Everyone at West Ham United Ladies would like to thank Julia Setford for all her hard work over the years. She’s left her position with WHUL.’ The Hammers are also inviting applications from anyone interested in becoming their new club chairman.
Previous chairman Ray Wood recently stepped down from the role but is currently assisting the club until a suitable replacement is found. The club would love to hear from someone with a strong business background who thinks they could help the club achieve its ambitions. All interested parties are invited to contact the club at firstname.lastname@example.org with details of their previous experience and reasons for wanting to take on the role.