Manchester United have confirmed plans to form a professional women's team, having already submitted an application to the Football Association.
If successful, United - currently the only Premier League outfit not to have a senior women's side - intend to integrate the new team into the second tier of the Women's Super League.
The Red Devils are hoping to bring through female talent from the Girls' Regional Talent Club, with the squad to be based at the historic training centre at The Cliff.
Announcing the move, chief-executive Ed Woodward told United's official website: "We are pleased to announce that the club intends to establish its first ever professional women's team and has submitted an application to enter WSL2.
"The FA has provided excellent support through the process and we believe that launching a team in WSL2 would give many more of our graduates from the Regional Talent Club the chance to establish themselves as first-team players.
"The Manchester United women's team must be built in the same image and with the same principles as the men's first team and offer academy players a clear route to top-level football within the club."
Leigh Sports Village, which currently plays host to the male Under-23s side, has been earmarked as a potential home ground.