Cassie calls time on her 20-year career with Stoke City Ladies

STOKE City Ladies FC's longest-serving player, Cassie Hyde, has stunned fans by announcing she is leaving the Potteries club.

Cassie, 30, was a founder member of the first Stoke female team formed in the summer of 2001.

Since then she has enjoyed immense success with the ladies senior team as it progressed from county and regional level to the FA Women's Premier League Northern Division status it enjoys today.

Season 2008-09 saw the ladies gain promotion from the West Midlands League to the Midland Combination, followed by title winning 2012-13 campaign that saw the team gain promotion to national league level.

For the last 11 years Cassie has formed a sold partnership with with skipper and close friend Megan Bowyer in a central defensive role. Both women hail from Leek.

Cassie said: "I can't believe I'm actually saying this, and it's been something I never ever thought I would be saying, but after 20 years at the club I feel my time at Stoke has come to an end.

"This has been one of the toughest decisions I have ever had to make, but I've always said I would want to leave Stoke at the right time and in the right way.

"I can't tell you how much football at Stoke has brought me, the memories is something no-one will ever take away from me".

She continued: "Winning the treble, that first game in the northern prem when I scored last minute to get us a point away at Newcastle; the stay overs, the long journeys, the nights out, the achievements and trophies, both personally and collectively".

Cassie comes from a footballing family. Both her brothers, Dan and Andy, have played for and been a management team at Leek CSOB, and her father John is the club president.

She added: "I've met people in my life who will always be a part of me. The club itself is an amazing club and a club that have always been so good to play for.

"To be involved from the beginning to where it is now, as Stoke's longest-serving player, is something I feel very proud of and I feel privileged to be part of such a great club.

"Spending all my childhood through to now playing football and travelling back and forth has been a routine and norm for me for so long. I'm going to miss it so much, it's all I have ever known".

Cassie, a resident home care assistant, said: "For my age I feel I still have regular football in me, but with work and not being around as much as I would like in Stoke, I feel has left me not involved as maybe I would like.

"I feel Stoke is on a new journey now. As I have always said, football is about enjoying it and I found over the last 12 months I wasn't enjoying it as much as I should .

"I feel now is the right time to start a new chapter," she added.


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