In Conversation With Chris Hames


It has been a while since I have done one of these In Conversation posts and what better way to bring them back than with Bradford City Women's very own Chris Hames. Since Chris took charge of the women's team we have definitely seen an improvement both on and off the pitch however, the pandemic ultimately put a hold on that progress but as we enter the new season which we are hoping to complete this time around we are also going in as being part of the Bradford City Community Foundation and Bingley Bantams Ian & Keith Taylor taking charge of the club on a day to day basis. This move is bound to help bring in supporters and bring the women's club more inline with the men's and junior teams which has been needed for a long time really so the women's team were part of he club more than just having the same name and kits. So here is how our chat with Chris about the upcoming season, changes and pandemic delays went... 

EOTA : Whilst we haven’t seen much on the pitch due to covid we have seen plenty of movement off the pitch with Ian & Keith Taylor joining the club and us becoming part of community foundation how do you think that’s going to benefit us?

Chris : Them joining the club has been a breath of fresh air. It means a lot to us that we are part of the institution that is Bradford City - and the support they have given has been superb so far. Qas has taken over as our GM, which will only drive this club on with what he gives for the club and his ambition, as well as allowing us to rejoin and get closer to the Junior teams again - and we can all see the quality of player coming through at all ages there.

EOTA :  With the last two seasons being cancelled we haven’t seen your full potential as manager yet but results started to change for the better. Are you confident we can keep this up?

Chris : This has never been about me. The group hasn't changed dramatically since the one that was struggling when I took over, all they needed was some confidence, some direction and then we have had a few excellent people join the group too. We've reached a point where there is a buzz about the place, where being good people is the first and last condition to being a part of the club, and that has to power to take us very far.

EOTA : With two new additions to the league are you looking forward to finding out what those teams are all about after there being no movement between leagues due to the cancelled seasons?

Chris : Yes it'll be nice to have some new teams to play, and some new challenges - though there are still a number of teams in this division I haven't faced over the last two years, with all the lockdowns and postponements, so the whole season should feel like a new challenge as it is. There will be challenges to these additions. FC United have come up having had years of dominating the league above, and I am very familiar with their manager and players, from some of my previous roles. Alnwick proves a different challenge, one we don't know much about yet, but I'm sure they will come flying into this league - though we may need to charter a flight to just get us up there for a 2pm KO!

EOTA :  What are your main aims for this season? Is it all about promotion or is it mainly finding your rhythm again after all the stop start of the past few seasons? 

Chris : I am always under the belief that we must all 'aim for the moon...' so lets see

EOTA :  Covid has been a big player since March 2020 and with the fact it isn’t going away do you think we are going to suffer from further disruption.

Chris : Yes, unfortunately. It is going to be a tough job for the league to make sure that no one is unfairly punished for Covid reasons, but also to ensure that teams don't use it to their advantage, like we saw one or two try to do last term. I think we just have to be flexible, and adapt to the environment at each time, though I do hope this season can be completed.

EOTA :  We are seeing the club come closer to the men's team and after the merge with the foundation we are seeing a lot more promotion across social media, do you think that promotion is going to bring in more fans to games?

Chris : Bradford City is a huge club. As an outsider I probably didn't realise how big a club it was until I came; but the support is special, in spite of there not always being a lot to cheer about over the last few years. I want the people of Bradford, the fans of City to embrace us as a part of their club, as a part of the family and come out in numbers. I would love for 1% of the men's match going crowd to come and follow us week in week out too.

EOTA : Have you found it easier or harder to recruit new players / keep hold of players with all that has gone on or do you think the addition of the foundation has helped bring in new faces? 

Chris : The girls have been fantastic. Their development over the last 12 months, in spite of everything, has been great to be a part of, and we have a group that are determined to see this out together. 

EOTA : For those who might be inspired by the Euros and want to take a step into management do you have any advice?

Chris : Just do it. Go help out at a grassroots club. Under 9's, Under 16's, Reserves, First team. It doesn't matter, just get involved.

So there we have it that was our in conversation with Chris Hames, I am hoping to get more pieces from Chris and the team throughout the season to run alongside these little interviews so keep your eyes on the blog for them as I already have a few more to post very soon but I thought we best start with Chris to see what he thinks about the season ahead. Throughout this morning there will be a lot more Bradford City content but if you want to see interviews with anyone specific please do let me know as they are really fun to do and give us all a bit more of an insight into the teams.  Fingers crossed Chris can get the team playing as they should be this season and Covid doesn't cause any more disruption. 

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