Derby County Ladies Football Club

Club Legend Emily Jeffery Retires

Derby County Ladies Club Legend Emily Jeffery has announced her retirement from the game after 14 seasons with the Ewe Rams senior set-up. 

Having been with the club since she was 12-years old, ‘Jeffo’ as she was affectionately known by those within the club told DCLFC Media that whilst it was a tough decision after recovering from her ACL injury sustained in the 2016/17 season, the next chapter in her life beckons.

Jeffery said “I’ve never had to make a decision as hard as this, it was gut-wrenching but after talking things through with my family and my boyfriend, it just felt right to move onto a new part of my life. Having to tell Sam (Griffiths) was tough and I have to admit I shed a few tears.

“I never thought i’d stop playing if I was honest, before the injury you’d have to wrestle to get that shirt off my back but a couple of operations after the injury puts things into perspective and I just think it was the right time to put my football career to bed.”

The retiring defender played over 230 senior games for the Ewe Rams and with over 70 goals scored wearing the white and black of the club, she admits that she will miss being part of the set-up but that there is no chance that she will fade into the background and will be cheering on from the stands.

“It’s going to hit home once the new season starts up again that I will no longer be playing and I’ll miss my football family so much, I love this club and have done since I first stepped out onto the pitch with the Under 12’s.

“Everyone I have played with has been a massive part of my time with the club and we won and lost together which made it so special. I’ve played with many great players and made some lifelong friends in the game.

“Both myself and ‘Wardy’ (Club Captain Hannah Ward) have come through the junior ranks and so we have that bond that i’ll miss so much, she is what i call my ‘Football Wife’ and will always be one of my best friends and i’m gutted I won’t get to play with her again.

“However, I know that as captain she has an important role to play in the new era for the club and I can’t wait to be there to support her and the rest of the team from the stands as it continues to grow. This club is ready for the next level and I wish everyone all the best.”

Having been a mainstay of the senior set-up for nearly 15 years, ‘Jeffo’ has been through both highs and lows with the club and looking back on her time at the club, she earmarked a few highlights that she will always remember.

“I can remember starting back with the Under 12’s and getting that phone call from Steve Hall was the first of many and I can’t thank him enough for seeing something in me and believing in me, he was a massive part of my early days at the club.

“I’ve played at Pride Park and doing the double one season, winning the cup and getting into the Northern Premier League which was a special feeling, particularly playing with some of my closest friends too.

“I think the most important though has to be scoring the winner to keep the club in the division against Aston Villa after staring defeat in the face with just a few minutes remaining. I’ve scored a few over the years but nothing as important and exciting as that!”

Everyone at the club would like to wish Jeffo all the best in her retirement and later today we will hear more from inside the club on Emily Jeffery’s retirement.