Powell relishing Olympics exposure

09 July 2012 / 07:51

Team GB head coach Hope Powell believes London 2012 is the perfect opportunity to raise the profile of women's football.

The first competitive action of this summer's Olympics sees her team face New Zealand at the Millennium Stadium on July 25. Tough-looking matches with Cameroon and Brazil follow, making Team GB sixth favourite with the bookmakers for gold this summer.

Powell, though, is hopeful Team GB can secure a podium finish, and said: "It is fantastic. It gives us a real opportunity to showcase women's football in this country."

She went on: "There are some real talented players on display, certainly with the GB team as well as the rest of the world.

"It is a real platform that hopefully we can build on. It will certainly let the world know what women's football is about, especially in this country,.

"Hopefully that will encourage more people to get involved in women's football so at the end of it we're hoping to leave a really positive legacy."

Powell was speaking at Loughborough University, where the squad were kitted out for the Games.

The Team GB coach also used the opportunity to name 30-year-old Lincoln defender Casey Stoney as squad captain for the Olympics.

"It is a fantastic day being here, getting kitted out and being announced as captain," Stoney told Press Association Sport. "My feet have not touched the floor yet.

"I am sure I will go back and have conversations with my family as I have not spoken to anyone yet. I haven't been able to tell my nearest and dearest. It's a massive honour, huge privilege and I am really thankful that Hope has trusted me with that position."