End of an era for Caz Evans at Chichester & Selsey

Chichester & Selsey Ladies FC director and secretary Caz Evans has stepped down from her roles after 13 years at the club.

It’s been a long journey and a lot of history involved over the years. In her first year she was the first team goal keeper being coached by Matt Wright, at the end of the season Matt took over as First Team manager and asked Caz to join the coaching staff. She did and the rest is history.

Caz immediately became the secretary and worked on the paperwork behind the scenes and at the same time was player/manager of the reserve side. The years progressed and so did gaining volunteers at the club including her assistant Rhys Griffiths and Malcolm Ellis, two people who worked with Caz closely for many years with the reserves. Chichester City Ladies then became their own company and Caz was appointed director.

Chichester City champions

The senior teams were progressing well within the women’s football pyramid and the beginning of the youth setup began in 2012. Several girls’ teams were created and Caz also became the youth secretary. After Matt left the club, she then became the Chair in his place. Caz has had roles at the club from kit person, painting football pitches, even dressed as the club mascot (big blue falcon) and Santa for different football events to help raise money. Running football tournaments to bring in money for the club has also been part of her role and she would throw her hand at anything to ensure the club had what it needed and the teams could continue to play the game they love.

After Caz stepped down from the manager of the reserves, she ended up becoming the coach of the U-10s and has continued to work with them as they are now the current U-16s.

A couple of years ago was the toughest time for the club when financially they were struggling and a move to Selsey was needed. The club have embraced the ladies team and they are now in a better place as Chichester and Selsey Ladies.

Chichester win Sussex Cup

Caz has been involved in many special moments for the club over the years and she gives us her top 10 moments below:

  • Reserves winning the league and being promoted to South East Counties Premier Division
  • First team winning the league and being promoted to the FA Women’s National League Southern Premier
  • Sussex Cup – beating Brighton twice; in a semi-final when Hannah McNamara saved the deciding penalty and 3-0 in a final with a world class goal from Abbey Shrubb.
  • Watching players like Loulou Robson and Alice Walford play for the first team after being in the club’s first ever youth side at U-12s and growing into the senior setup
  • U-13s winning their league
  • U-15s winning the Hampshire cup
  • U-16s winning the Hampshire plate
  • FA Cup – the game against Liverpool, working with volunteers to be able to have over 1,300 fans at Oaklands is a stand out. Also, facing West Ham away this season.
  • Watching the U-16s turn old enough to train and play with the seniors this season was a proud moment,  especially when some have been working with Caz since they were 8 years old.
  • Moving the club to Selsey to ensure it carried on, were at a place that wanted us and wanted to help us progress further.

Chichester v Liverpool

Caz told us: “There are so many memories I hold for this club and too many to write down or even remember at times. I have given everything to this club as a volunteer for a long time and enjoyed working with so many amazing players, staff, volunteers and opponents. I have made some great friends and too many to mention them all.

“I would like to thank Matt Wright for being my football partner for many years and a special thank you to Rhys Griffiths and Malcolm Ellis, without whom we wouldn’t have been able to have a reserve side so many years ago. I could spend all day thanking people who I have worked with but you all know who you are and I do truly appreciate you all for your help over the years.

“One thing I would like people to know is that the current manager Sadie Blakely has been a breath of fresh air at the club. To be able to build a team like she has since being appointed is nothing short of a miracle and for that team to improve in times such as Covid-19 is a credit to her, her staff team and the players and I know she will go on to great things at the helm. An appointment in manager that I have never regretted and never will!

“Handing over the directorship of the club and stepping away completely has been hard for me but it is now time for me to walk away and let others take things forward. It will be nice to have my evenings and weekends back after so long and I am likely to be completely lost for a while but I am sure I will be attending games to watch the team from a distance and will keep an eye on their progress.

“One final word goes to new Chair Sam Ashton who has been instrumental in keeping this club going over the last couple of years, including a successful move to Selsey. I know the club is in good hands going forward and will only be able to go from strength to strength with her and the other volunteers involved.

Caz Evans stands down at Chichester & Selsey

“Thank you to everyone I have met along the way, you are all amazing and continue to do the great work in getting women’s football to become as big as it can.”

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