Dulwich Hamlet’s women’s match against QPR in December will be held as a tribute to the team’s coach who passed away from cancer this month.
The club announced Farouk Menia, the team’s coach since its days as AFC Phoenix, had died after a long battle with cancer on November 8.
A Go Fund Me page set up by the team to help support his family, including his two young children, has raised more than £3,000 so far.
Writing online, player Zoe Elmore said: “It is with an incredibly heavy heart to share with you that our beloved coach, Farouk Menia, has passed after a long battle with cancer.
“It is impossible to put into words what Farouk brought to Dulwich, AFC Phoenix and us as players and individuals.
“He inspired, he pushed, he asked questions, he laughed – he made us the best versions of ourselves, on and (more importantly) off the pitch.
“The impact Farouk had on our lives will never be forgotten. And to honour him and his memory, we are asking for support to provide for his family, including his two young children, during this incredibly difficult time.
“We love you Farouk. And know you’re keeping it spicy in heaven.”
A celebration of his life will be held on Sunday, December 8, at DHFC after the women’s match against QPR, which will be played in tribute to him. All are invited to join and share their memories.
The DHFC Supporters’ Trust’s Mark Scotock said: “He leaves behind a strong women’s team that I know will continue to build on the foundations he helped create during the eight years he had been involved with them.”
Other teams have rallied round, including AFC Wimbledon Ladies, Actonians LFC, Comet WFC and Crawley Wasps LFC who have all held match collections in aid of the fundraiser.
Tributes on the Go Fund me page included these words from Lucy Porter, who said: “I was very sorry to hear this news. I feel very privileged to have known him for a short while when our paths crossed at AFC Phoenix.
“His passion for the game and women’s football was clear and it was a pleasure to play in his team. Sending lots of love to his family at this difficult time.”