Derby County Ladies Football Club

Ewe Rams Legends Become First Club Ambassadors

Derby County Ladies are delighted to announce that former long-time Ewe Rams stars, Emily Jeffery and Lorna Abbey have agreed to become the first ever Official Club ambassadors for Derby County Ladies where they will play their part in building our relationship with the local community.

Both long serving players were forced to retire from the game in recent seasons after injury deprived them of extending their careers with Jeffery falling victim to the dreaded ACL club, whilst Abbey was kept on the sidelines with a persistent back injury that eventually saw her having to put her boots away.

Former Defender Jeffery was up until recently, the club’s leading goalscorer, having come through the ranks in some of the early Derby County Ladies Academy teams, and played an integral part in keeping the Ewes into the FA National League a few seasons back with a crucial late goal against Aston Villa Ladies.

Speaking to DCLFC Media, Jeffo as she is known to many said “Becoming an ambassador for the club that I have loved and played for since I was 12 years old is a huge and massive honour and a very, very proud moment for me. I am over the moon to be asked.

“I have loved every minute of being a player, loved being a member of a great club and I respect all the managers that I have played under. I have to thank Steve Hall and Sheila Rolliston who first recognised my potential when I was 12 years old, and gave me the chance of playing for the club. Playing for the club lasted 14 seasons. 

“I am very proud to have been part of such an amazing ladies football club, and to be considered an ambassador.”

As the longest serving member of the famous Abbey quartet of sisters who have all played for the club, Lorna formed a key defensive partnership with Jeffo for a number of seasons and was once again a massive part of the Ewe Rams rise through the divisions.

Lorna said “I Was was very surprised and shocked when I was asked to be an ambassador for the club as we’ve never had anyone for this before. Its really nice to have been asked though because for players like myself and Emily who have been at the club for many years and have had to give up playing for the club we both love for injury reason it’s hard stomach.

“Sadly It wasn’t our choice to stop playing as such and when that’s all you’ve known it’s hard to walk away and all of a sudden have nothing to do with the club, playing wise or socially.  And when the clubs been a big part of your life for so long it leaves a lot of time in your life that you don’t no what to do with. I’ve managed to fill that time up now haha!”

Speaking to the club, Chief Executive Duncan Gibb feels that the club has come from humble beginnings and without the support of legends like both Abbey and Jeffery, the club would not be in the position to cement it’s own internal club synergy.

Gibb said “ I’m delighted that Lorn and Jeffo have agreed to formally continue their respective associations with the club. As players they have been outstanding servants, enjoying lengthy playing careers in the famous black and white, both of which were curtailed sooner than both we and they would have liked through injury. 

“In addition to being fantastic players, you’d be hard pressed to meet to nicer people, which also bodes well in terms of them representing the club and building rapport with our younger players.

“One of the key drivers for us as a club now is to further develop our own internal ‘One Club’ synergy. The numbers that attend our Xmas and end of season club functions is evidence that it is there; however the clubs Operational Board are keen for this to develop further. 

“Appointing a Social Development Director in Alison Cope has been a fundamental part of that intent and it’s great that we now have Alison, Stephen Joughin (Finance Director) and Dave Cholerton (Academy Director) sat in the boardroom.

“Members of the First Team Squad will be joining the Academy teams at training from the New Year and we feel that having two former players to act as Club Ambassadors will also help us to inspire players within the Academy on top of promoting Derby County Ladies within the wider community.”