Women's Soccer

WPS gets conditional sanctioning for 2012

WPS logo

Having faced uncertainty about its future in recent weeks and months, WPS appears to have avoided doomsday. At least for now.

WPS reportedly received conditional Division 1 sanctioning for 2012 from U.S. Soccer's board of directors on Monday evening despite it only having five teams and the minimum for Division I status typically being eight. The decision will be finalized and a formal statement will follow once WPS owners agree upon certain conditions made by U.S. Soccer.

The league's future had been put under the microscope after the magicJack franchise was made extinct following disputes with its owner, Dan Borislow. U.S. women's national team stars Abby Wambach, Hope Solo, Christie Rampone, Megan Rapinoe and Shannon Boxx all played for the club.

The five teams currently in the league are Atlanta Beat, Boston Breakers, Philadelphia Independence, Sky Blue FC and the defending champion Western New York Flash, which employs Brazilian star Marta. 

What do you think of U.S. Soccer's decision to give WPS conditional sanctioning? Do you see the league surviving?

Share your thoughts below.

  • ChrisTheLSUTiger

    Starting a female soccer league in the US during a terrible recession was a brilliant idea.


  • k

    The only way to save the WPS is to align it with MLS. Share the stadiums, the front offices, and the sales infrastructure and put it to use to promote the women’s side of the game. The current 5 east coast teams and 5 west coast teams (Sea, Por, L.A., S.D. and Van).


  • JP

    It seems to me that the best model for WPS is to laign themselves with a number of MLS teams and share the infrastructure.

    Women’s games would be preliminary matches (or after event) for MLS games.


  • k

    Hope Solo will come home to be the first player signed to the new Seattle team; history repeats itself.


  • spencer

    agreed, it has always been a bad idea and will always be a bad idea. There is no revenue in female professional sports and never will be. Look at the WNBA it is still alive but you never hear anything about it. Somethings you just need to let fail.


  • Troy

    I would like to see WPS succeed, however if it can’t after a good WC run by our women then it’s not good. At the same time MLS is gaining ground so that’s equally troubling.


  • gerald

    Aligning with the MLS would be the way to go but I don’t see that happening. I would get Sky Blue tickets if they played at Red Bull Arena (which is near by) but I’m not as likely to go if I have to add an hour + each way to go to a match.


  • Travis

    I like the idea of aligning with the MLS in most cases, however, like with the WNBA, therea are cities which will support a team that don’t have MLS, such as Rochester, Charlotte/Chapel Hill.

    The main thing to me is to make sure the league finds a way to keep travel expenses down and stadium leases low.


  • PhillyPride

    I love to watch the games and so do many others, so you’ll excuse us if we don’t take your advice. If you’re a soccer fan, the least you can do is show support for the sake of your fellow fans who love the women’s game.


  • Pitt Evertonian

    MLS clubs barely make enough money as it is, I am sure that they aren’t going to want to partner up with a bleeding entity. The WNBA has a lot of same issues with the NBA pretty much subsidizing the league.


  • TGA

    The NBA was formed in 1946. The WNBA was formed in 1996. That is 3 years after MLS was formed.
    So do the math and put WPS on hold until until 2044.


  • Eric

    In theory it’s a nice idea, but it’s not feasible right now. Maybe when MLS teams are all turning a profit it wil be viable, but at the moment I doubt you’ll find MLS owners willing to take on the extra debt.


  • DCLee

    Agreed PhillyPride. I love MLS and the sport so am rooting for the league to succeed and have enjoyed watching Marta and all the great players in the league at international competition.


  • NC Jeff

    With USSF now having “settled” this (I say they just acted like a politician and kicked the can down the street), I wonder when they’ll decide on NASL’s status (provisional, again?).


  • Vic

    Aligning WPS with MLS is a bad idea for MLS. Part of the MLS fan base are parents taking their kids to games. There is a finite amount of games parents will bring their kids to. If you have an WPS team in an MLS stadium some parents will take their kids to the WPS game. That will effect MLS revenue as well as attendance/atmospere.


  • deepvalue

    Put two teams in each of four or five hub cities that are geographically close to each other. For example, two teams in Boston, NY, and Philly. Then put one team in a few of the cities that might support one like Rochester. See if you can get every possible economy of scale out the reduced travel costs. Look to expand later.


  • Rosa

    I’ve always thought they could merge the WPS with the Women’s Premier Soccer League. They have a lot more teams and they can break up the country in 4 quadrants and just have the top point earners play against each other in a tournament of the top 4 teams of each quadrant. I mean, they don’t make that much money to start with in the WPS anyways. Most of it comes from the advertisers, I’m sure they’ll still have plenty of people wanting to advertise with the girls since Soccer is growing so much in the states.


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