Tractor Girls on Tour: Bringing an atmosphere to the fourth division of Women's football
Photo Credit:(Gettyimages/Stephen Pond)

The first weekend of the Women’s game made headlines for the bumper attendances at matches, with over 30,000 at the Etihad Stadium and over 24,000 at Stamford Bridge.

However, just a couple days before, a match in the fourth division attracted 761 fans, a number which could show a lot more about the progression in the women’s game than those from the Women's Super League.

That attendance was in Ipswich Town‘s East Anglian Derby against Norwich City at The Goldstar Ground. To put it into perspective, it is just over a hundred less than turned out to watch a Birmingham City side who finished fourth in the top division in their season opener.

There is currently a positive atmosphere around all things football in Ipswich, with the men's side one point off the top spot in league two with a game in hand under Paul Lambert, and the Women's side have had the highest attendance in their division in every match so far.

Who are 'Tractor Girls on Tour'?

The supporters' group started their twitter account on the 8th of September, and have gained over 1000 followers in under a week at the time of writing, aided by support from fans from around the country and the club’s own players.

They are trying to build support around the club and an atmosphere at matches, and have created merchandise to advertise their team - much like that which has been successful with Manchester United's Barmy Army

The group spoke exclusively to about their aims, how they will accomplish them, and how they think Ipswich will do this season:

When did you start following the women’s team?

"The majority of us started following after the recent derby game vs Norwich which saw a record crowd."

Why were you initially interested in Ipswich’s women’s side?

"The initial interest came from the hype surrounding a local derby, once we went we realised how much fun it was."

What are the main aims of ‘Tractor Girls on Tour?’

"[The] main aims are to get more people involved, create an atmosphere and just improve the support the girls get at their games."

What do you think about the interest around the club currently?

"The support we’ve received and the interest in the team has been unreal and we never expected for it to grow as fast as it has done."

What do you think the club could do to help the team grow?

"The club have been brilliant with supporting our ideas and letting us know what we should do to improve them to benefit the club as a whole."

How will you increase support and generate an atmosphere at matches?

"We’ve purchased flags, stickers and pin badges which will be on display at games and should hopefully be available to buy soon."

What would you say to fans who may be sceptical of the women’s team?

"Come down to a game and give it a try, any support is beneficial and you’ll be surprised at how many people realise how good it is once they come for the first time."

How do you think Ipswich will do this season?

"It’s been a great start, hopefully, the team can keep progressing on the pitch and the support off it will run parallel to this."

It's safe to say that the project that is currently going on in East Anglia both on and off of the pitch is one that a number of people in the Women's Football space have their eyes fixated on, and the blues could be a side which people see higher in the football pyramid in the future