- For a prize fund of SR1.43 million, 8 teams will play over 56 matches.
- The First Division League will begin to play the following month, bringing the combined number of clubs in both leagues to 25.
RIYADH: On Thursday night, Al-Nassr defeated Sama at the Prince Faisal bin Fahd Stadium’s reserve pitch to officially open the SAFF Women’s Premier League in Saudi Arabia.
This is the most recent development in the Kingdom’s women’s football landscape during the previous several years.
Greater Riyadh (Al-Yamamah), Jeddah (Jeddah Eagles), and Dammam (Eastern Flames) hosted more than 400 players from 16 clubs in the league’s debut season, which resulted in three champions. After an eight-team knockout match in Jeddah, Riyadh’s Al-Mamlaka went on to win the National Championship.
The competition has since been reorganized by the Saudi Arabian Football Federation to include the Premier League and First Division League.
Al-Hilal, the Asian Champions League champions, Al-Nassr, Al-Ahli, Al-Ittihad, and Al-Shabab are among the traditional men’s Saudi Pro League clubs that have been enticed to enter the top division by the new system.
In addition to garnering local interest, the recently established league has also attracted a large number of skilled players from the surrounding area and the rest of the world.
The Premier League will include eight clubs competing on a home-and-away basis over the next 14 weeks, for a total of 56 matches, with a historic prize fund of about $380,500 (SR1.43 million). 17 clubs from all around the Kingdom will compete in the First Division League, which begins on November 11, for a prize total of about $175,580 (SR 660,000), with the winner being promoted to the Premier League.
The establishment of the new leagues follows significant advancements in all facets of Saudi Arabian women’s football, including youth development, coaching, and refereeing.
Bandari Al-Mubarak and Nora Ibrahim’s goals in the final 15 minutes helped the hosts rallied from a 3-1 halftime deficit to earn a 3-3 draw in the national team’s maiden home games against Bhutan last month.