PLYMOUTH Argyle Ladies have lost last season’s supporters’ player-of-the-year Leah Burridge and promising youngsters Leah Johnson and Beth Everson.
However, the club used their first training session back since the coronavirus lockdown to have a look at potential new players.
The club had more than 30 current players and trialists attend their first session back on Sunday.
Manager Dave Leonard was pleased with the turnout, although he admitted his disappointment at seeing Burridge return to Yeovil Town.
“It is sad to see her go but it gives someone else the opportunity to fill that place,” said Leonard.
Youngsters Johnson and Everson, meanwhile, have joined Marine Academy Plymouth.
Argyle’s first team have three pre-season games lined up. They are due to visit Callington Town on August 23, although this could be moved to a week earlier. They will also visit Bournemouth and entertain Poole Town, but those dates have to be confirmed.
Argyle’s development team have four pre-season matches arrange. They will start with a home game against Torquay United on Saturday, August 2 before visiting Saltash United seven days later. They are then due to travel to Callington Town, although this may be reversed as the first team are due to play Callington the following Sunday. They end their warm-up campaign with a visit to Liverton on Wednesday, August 26 for an evening kick-off.
Meanwhile, Argyle Ladies have moved quickly to replace secretary Andrew Bellamy by appointing Scott Cooksley.
Cooksley has stood down from his role as football secretary and welfare officer at Thursday night’s Saltash United AGM and is now fully committed to Argyle.
The 25-year-old, who is a business administrator for a pub holding company based in Estover and lives in Wembury, replaces Bellamy, who stood down recently after four years at the helm.
Bellamy will be a hard act to follow and the club have been keen to thank him for his terrific service he gave to the club.
Cooksley will be assisted by Matt Gilmore, who is currently secretary of Plymouth Marjon FC.
Cooksley has previously said his ambition is to be involved with a professional football club. He has enjoyed work experience at both Plymouth Argyle and Southampton.
He joined Saltash United as media manager in August 2017 before becoming secretary the following May and then also club welfare officer in September.
In January 2019, he started studying BA (Hons) degree in business management (sport and football) run by the Open University and EFL Trust.
This January, Cooksley was invited to be a volunteer at UEFA Euro 2020 (now in 2021) as part of the Wembley Stadium ticketing team and in March attended independent member disciplinary panel training so he could assist Cornwall FA as independent panel member on disciplinary hearings.
Cooksley is relishing the chance to work with Plymouth Argyle Ladies.
“It’s a fantastic opportunity to become part of the biggest women’s football club in this corner of the country – affiliated to the club I am a supporter of,” he said.
“I have really grown to love women’s football in recent years and I’m delighted to see its reputation growing fourfold.”
He added: “My aim and ambition is to work within the football industry within a football administrational/operational capacity and to successfully complete my degree over the next four years.
“I hope to build on the great work that has been done over the last few years to bring the club to where it is today.
“I hope to help with the club’s progress towards its own targets of where it should be competing.
“I am also looking forward to working with Matthew (Gilmore) to ensure best possible practices within PALFC.”