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Published 02 December 2021 4 min read
Inclusive Football

'Playing the sport I love as my true, authentic self'

Written by:

Amber Evans

During Rainbow Laces week 2021, Amber Evans writes about her experiences as a transgender grassroots footballer


From an early age I’ve always loved football. 
You could always find me in the garden with my dad, playing 1v1. 
I showed promise in my early years, but for a number of reasons I wasn't able to progress my football. 
But when I came out as transgender at the age of 27, I thought my days of playing football would be behind me.
Fortunately, I was wrong. After a few trials with different clubs, I was accepted at Torquay United. 
In action for Saltash United, where I'm now playing as a goalkeeper
In action for Saltash United, where I'm now playing as a goalkeeper
The manager, Jamie McInnes, was superb in ensuring my identity as a transgender woman was not a problem and that I was an equal part of the team.
My first match was a Women’s FA Cup game against Weston Super Mare. Subbed on in the 80th minute, I scored my first goal for the club. 
I felt a wave of pride in how far I’d come, to not only be playing the sport I love, but to be doing so as my true, authentic self. 
It was only after the game that I found out I was the first transgender person to score a goal in the Women’s FA Cup and I’m honoured to hold this accolade and only hope that this is the first of many more to come.
I now play for Saltash United, under the management of Dave Hengle, who has been another great source of strength and support. 
Training now as a goalkeeper, I hope to keep progressing my game and showing that transgender people belong in sport as much as anyone else.