Players from Chelsea, led by club captain John Terry, have stepped in to secure the future of the club's women's team after cuts in funding threatened to damage the side's hopes of challenging for honours.
Casey Stoney, the team captain, told The Guardian newspaper how Terry's generosity had allowed the team to keep its budget for the new season despite the cuts. "It was a blow when we were told what was happening," Stoney, who also works as a coach at the Chelsea Academy, told the newspaper. "I mentioned it to a friend who's also a mate of JT's, and when he was told about it JT came to find me at the training ground to ask if he could help.
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"He ended up putting his hand in his pocket and persuading some of the other players to do the same, so now we can keep going on the same footing we had last year," she continued. "We need that level of funding if we are going to compete at the top end of the Premier League and do well in the big cup competitions, so the help we've had from the guys has been invaluable."
Terry has also become the president of the club's women's team. "He's been with his family to see us play, so he's taking a real interest," Stoney told the newspaper.