Women in Football

Unfortunately our Lionesses were knocked out last night in the Euro semi-finals by the Netherlands. But regardless of that ‘failure’, they still reached their second semi-final in three years. They should be proud of this. We all should be.

“If the men’s team were doing this well, they’d have changed the name of our currency to Raheem Sterling.”

But our country should also be ashamed. Ashamed of the state football is in today, the inequality and the large sum of unsustainable money in the game.

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Over a hundred years ago we invented the glorious game, but in 1921 the FA banned football for women. A couple of weeks back Clare Balding hosted a great programme on Channel 4 – ‘When Football Banned Women’ . If you’re into football and or a feminist, get it watched.

During and after WWI women’s football was very popular but then all of a sudden they were banned from playing the sport for a whole 50 years because fuddy duddy men in the FA did not want women getting paid for playing football. Outrageous!

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As much as women’s football is now legal, the game is still far from being equal. Just this week Neymar was sold to PSG for a record breaking £200mil, he’ll be earning £782k a week! Compare this to the highest paid female footballer, Steph Houghton who earns roughly £60k a year… again… outrageous!

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In Clare’s documentary she visited a girl’s team, when asked who their heroes and heroines were they replied Stevie G, Jagielka, Joe Hart etc. Not very many heroines, and why would there be? Women’s football gets very little coverage. The past few weeks the Euro’s have been taking place in the Netherlands, I’ve seen very little of the tournament on the back pages of newspapers, I’ve not seen one St George’s flag in a super market, or dangling off people’s car. How can the future stars of England’s women’s team have a heroine role model when the media don’t cover their game?

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The FA have set a target for 2020 to double the number of women and girls playing football, they have also been running a girl’s football week (16th July – 6th August) with the aim to raise the sport’s profile. It would be great to see at the next women’s World Cup held in France a bigger hype, helping improve equality and respect in the sport.

Good luck to all working to achieve that, and chin up Lionesses! x

4 thoughts on “Women in Football

  1. Binging on Beetroot says:

    This post is awesome and SO needed. I’ve been meaning to watch When Football Banned Women for the last couple of weeks- I’ll get that done ASAP. This made for poignant over breakfast reading this morning! Kat x

    P.S. I actually run an online feminism newsletter called Feminism Up and if you happen to be interested in writing anything for it, definitely ping me a message!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. femalesportscoverage says:

    Brilliant article. From an Australian perspective, it’s interesting to note that the problem has been ascribed to participation rates in the UK. Over here, participation between males and females is much closer to equal, approximately 60/40 male/female amongst 6-13 year olds.Over here, the problem remains the media coverage & broadcasting deals and the lack of income potential. For example, our Matildas (female equivalent) just pulled off an enormous feat, winning the Tournament of Nations over 3 powerhouses, and are led by (in my opinion) the best player in the world Sam Kerr. It does seem like there’s an underground revolt occurring – the Matildas friendly just sold out well in advance of the Socceroos World Cup Qualifier. Yet all we really hear about in mainstream media is our stumbling, failing Socceroos? It seems coverage reflecting performance is our biggest issue, with females often falling out of touch with the game due to the lack of opportunity at the professional level.

    Like

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