When the North Wales Ladies Recreational League kicked off last season it brought about the re-emergence of a truly gifted goalscorer.
Emma Fisher’s fine form for Llysfaen Lionesses revived memories of when she was a prolific net finder for the likes of Colwyn Bay, Rhyl and Wrexham, leading to international recognition.
Grassroots North Wales is delighted to feature paramedic Emma in the fourth of our North Wales Women’s Football Greats series where we have previously celebrated the careers of Ceryl Jones, Alison Mummery and Iona Williams.
At what age did your interest in football start and what was the name of your first team?
I started playing football at the age of 10, I joined the original Colwyn Bay Ladies team.
What is your fondest early memory of playing football?
Has to be getting the new Manchester United kit to go to training in, back in 1991! I was made up!
Who were your early influences in the game?
When I first started playing football, it was the men’s teams who were then big in the news.
I was and still am a keen Manchester United fan, so it has to be back in the day of Mark Hughes and Bryan Robson and then of Ryan Giggs all the way.
Name the teams you have represented in your career?
Welsh development squad
Who were your first senior team and how did it go with them?
Colwyn Bay at the age of 10.
The days where there was no age limit for ladies sports!
Loved it, a regular starter in the team, starting as right back, right wing then found my forte as striker which stuck for the next 20 years.
What is the most memorable match you have played in?
Got to be the North Wales Cup with Colwyn Bay against Pwllheli.
Always a tough match and a close scoreline. A well deserved win in the end though.
Have you played any representative football ?
Yes, Wales (U16), Welsh Colleges and North Wales development squad
Describe your best ever goal
Oh now that’s a tough one…… I think for me a goal scored against Llangefni ladies. Took the ball around 2 defenders and with a shot off the outside of my right boot, curled past the keeper and in off the top corner post. Was it meant ?…. Probably not…. but they all count!
What is the most amount of goals you have scored in a single game?
I think about 9 or 10
How is women’s football in North Wales shaping up now compared to 20 years ago? How about 10 years ago?
Women’s football has changed dramatically since I first started playing.
There are so many affiliated clubs out there now, and so much social media coverage for them. Plenty of opportunity at all levels for women to carry on with their careers or to get involved as an amateur, its really good to see.
Who is the most talented team-mate you have played alongside?
Wow, ok, tough one here.
I’ve played alongside some fantastic players in my time, and so many of them with so many different qualities. I think from a striker point of view I would have to say Rhiannon Mahoney – Noni. Fantastic right winger with pace and accuracy, scored quite a few off her final ball in.
Who is the best manager you have played under?
Again another tough one, I think that Carl Rigby and Neil Todd have to both get a mention.
Who is the hardest opponent you have faced?
Pwllheli ladies central defence – Erica Jones and Emma Vaughn Pritchard. Like two terriers at your ankles!
What honours have you won in football (team or individual)?
Woman of the Match
What is/was your greatest strength as a player?
Greatest strength I think was the eye for the ball and anticipation of the through pass and a powerful accurate shot on most occasions too.
Which football ground did you enjoy playing at the most?
Colwyn Bay and Wrexham
Have you played against any well-known players who have gone on to perform at a much higher level?
I played against the likes of Sue Smith, who at the time was Tranmere Rovers, now commentates most of the women’s games. Karen Carney and Kelly Smith too.
How is the media coverage for women’s football these days compared to say, 10, 20 years ago?
So much coverage now at every level which I think is fantastic for all ladies who currently play to get that recognition and for those who are just starting out.
If you had your football career again, would you do anything differently?
I’m not sure really? I have enjoyed my time on the pitch, I’ve played against some great players and made some equally great friends along the way. I shall treasure the triumphs and tribulations for a very long time!
What involvement (if any) do you have in football nowadays?
I now play recreational football with Llysfaen Lionesses.
We have got some great players in the team, and all come together well in friendlies that we have played. We were doing extremely well in the league before lockdown struck.
I think when I do finally hang my boots up, I would be keen to get into management myself.