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Women’s Professional Soccer kicks off on Sunday

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The Women's Professional Soccer league kicks off its inaugural season on Sunday when the Washington Freedom travel to California to face the Los Angeles Sol.

The match is the first for the seven-team league, which will get into full swing the following week.

Featuring stars such as Marta, Abby Wambach and Hope Solo, the WPS is hoping to succeed where the W-USA could not. With expansion to 10 teams set for 2010, the WPS currently features the following seven teams:

  • Boston Breakers

  • Chicago Red Stars

  • FC Gold Pride

  • Los Angeles Sol

  • St. Louis Athletica

  • Sky Blue FC

  • Washington Freedom

We here at SBI haven't really given the WPS much coverage in the past, but are looking to include coverage as soon as we find a capable women's soccer writer.

For now, tell us what you think about the upcoming WPS season. Are you looking forward to it? Were you oblivious to it? Too enthralled in the start of MLS and World Cup qualifying to notice? Wondering if Marta will dominate the league?

Share your thoughts below.


  1. I’m not against the WPS. If anything we should be excited for another stab at the game. All the people who want soccer to grow in this country should be happy to see another league. There are many skilled women players who were cheated out of a professional career and now they have the chance.

    I’m for it. Maybe I’ll watch some of the games.

  2. I’d like to see it succeed. If it can break even in next 2 or 3 years, it could do well in a normal economy. We’ll be out of the recession(I hope) and the Woman’s world cup should generate additional interest, so I am pulling for it.

    I’ll go to 1 or 2 games, I’ll read anything that’s posted on our local team.

  3. I am excited for the women’s pro league to start and hope it does well. I am also happy to see Ives covering women’s soccer and think it would be great to cover it on a site like this one because the women’s game needs more constructive criticism.

    To those who do not want to read posts on women’s soccer, it is easy — skip the entries! I don’t read the entries on the Red Bull Practice Updates because I really don’t care, but at the same time I wouldn’t bash the Red Bull because Ives has practice reports. I simply skip over the entries I am not interested in.

    Regarding women playing soccer, you are entitled to your opinions, but I think some of the opinions are not based on much factual evidence or experience. I am a female who played professionally in the USA and abroad and am sure that I could dribble around 99% of the posters on this board. Just because I’m a woman and not as physically strong as a man doesn’t mean that I can’t play. I seem to have held my own playing in various men’s leagues throughout the years. It is one thing not to want to watch women’s soccer (I prefer watching the men’s game), but another to completely bash women athletes.

    A little education for some of you: the league is clearly going to be the best in the world because the US has the best and deepest player pool in the world. Germany and Sweden are the only other countries with decent leagues top to bottom. To those of you who think England has a good female league, you are wrong — there are two good teams, Arsenal and Everton and the rest are akin to a good high school aged club team in the US.

    The biggest questions to me, speaking from personal experience, involve the league’s structure. Why would you start the league in a deep recession? What about the operating costs in general? Isn’t cross country travel going to be expensive? Can you truly call it a professional league when most of the players are making $12,000 – $15,000? While I truly hope the league succeeds, these are simultaneously the types of tough questions you must ask.

    As a kid, I watched soccer, although there was no internet or Fox Soccer Channel. I found a way to watch the English First Division (it wasn’t the EPL yet) on a weekly basis on my t.v. I idolized the top male players and went out and practiced their moves in the park. I guess this just proves that you don’t need exclusively female role models, right? Now I follow European soccer, the Yanks abroad, USMNT, etc. I live for Alan Hansen’s commentary on “Match of the Day” and know who Alan Lambourne is. I even get the inside jokes on Special One T.V. I could tell you all about the Serie A and the subtle tactics of the Italians or why La Liga isn’t as deep as people think. Perhaps I’m not the stereotypical female soccer player?

  4. We have the #1 ranked women’s national team in the world. They deserve our respect and deserve to have a league to display their talent and hard work to the world, especially to the country they represent.

  5. The USWNT could not beat the USMNT U-20. This is pretty much understood. FC Dallas could not beat Man U. This is also understood. However, I am far more interested in and watch much more of FC Dallas than Man U, because the particular combination of personnel, location, etc. is more attractive to me. If “who would win” such hypothetical matchups is so important to you that you will not support the women’s game, then fine. Frankly, I will probably only watch a few games on TV. For those saying similar things, that’s fine, we were asked our opinion.

    What I will NOT do, however (and what some o here ARE doing), is belittle other sports with different rules (rules like, oh I don’t know, the team must be entirely made up of WOMEN?), or their fans, simply because the particular combination of criteria is less appealing to me. It’s a personal decision, but not a particularly important one, and the haters need to lay the F**k off.

    I support the highest level of women-playing-league-soccer-in-America, and I support the highest level of men-playing-league-soccer-in-America. To say they’re the same thing and one is unworthy (as opposed to simply not interesting to you), is misogynistic, plain and simple.

    Ives, bring on the WPS entries! See if the readership count goes down, and make a decision that’s righ for the site.

  6. “A goal of averaging 4,000-5,000 fans means that marketing sometimes involves recruiting one fan at a time. The Boston Breakers have hosted pizza parties at local high schools, said Rachel Epstein, the league’s director of marketing. In New Jersey, posters hang in storefronts.”

    That is a quote from

    These are doable expectations. Very doable. In fact, i would be willing to bet that they make a good amount of revenue in their first year. This will help bring in sponsors, and then WAM. you have a womens league with a good financial foundation. This will lure all of the best talents to the US, and our womens game will become undeniably the best in the world.

  7. Gotta support all types of soccer, but when the nation ignores the WBNA (a sport people like to watch) how is going to be any different for WPS (a sport most people don’t like to watch).

  8. I think most of the girls are hot and if I watch, that’ll be why. But no matter how hot they are, it’s not gonna be destination viewing.

    If I’m home and watching TV and there isn’t anything better to watch, yeah, I’ll check it out. But if MLS or a good foreign men’s game or a good NBA or NHL game or NASCAR or a replay of Shawshank Redemption is on, I’m likely watching that.

    I hope the league succeeds, and not just because I like to look at tan, athletic women. It’s good for both women and soccer in this country and that’s important.

    At the same time, they have an uphill battle combining the woes that pro soccer AND women’s sports have faced in the US. They may survive but it will be hard.

    And if they do survive, it’ll be of a minor league nature. And, there’s nothing wrong with that.

    Finally, as to the quality of the women’s game, much of it is often unwatchable but I think too often that’s because the US is playing some team that sucks.

    If the US is playing Brazil, Germany, Canada, Norway or Sweden then the action can be entertaining. But too often it is just either ugly or uncompetitive soccer.

    Hopefully the new league mirrors those US-Brazil games more than it does seeing Japan-New Zealand. And hopefully the girls are smokin’ hot!

  9. I’m relatively new to watching soccer. (started during the US-hosted Men’s WC) But I watched with enjoyment the Women’s WC as well, and found the entertainment _different_ not better or worse.

    I fear, however, the expansion plans are the real threat to the league. The WNBA is WAY to diluted in talent to be able to sell “good” basketball. And the college ranks don’t produce enough talent to make WNBA without subsidy from NBA.
    WPS, however, because of the international appeal of futbol, has a MUCH better chance of succeeding because the technical game can be exhibited by men and women alike. Therefore, there are MANY talented women playing futbol worldwide, and the best players come from the Title IX-enhanced talent pool of American players.

    Just don’t dilute the talent too early until WPS is viable on its own.

  10. Aztexan: La Liga isnt shown on Setanta, it’s shown on GolTV…

    I’ll probably watch a few LA games every now and then, and probably some SBFC ones as well, but I’m pretty sure that before their ‘all-star break’ or whatever they are calling it, my interest will have twiddled down to practically zero, I’ll give it a shot though.

  11. daisy- i thought you were comparing the WPS to other women’s league. I’m not saying they could beat a men’s best XI. I just think that the league could possibly the best selection of WOMEN at the moment.

  12. Aztxan, Dallas does have a team. One of the best forwards in MLS plays there. In fact, he just scored from 50 yards out last week. You should check them out sometime.

  13. I don’t understand how people can dismiss this out of hand, before a SINGLE game has been played. You’d cut slack for an expansion team, but not for an entire expansion league?

    I think it’s fine for all the snobs to stay home in front of their HD TVs and watch La Liga on Setanta. After all the level of play is so much higher, OMG!!!1!! But in the meantime, do everyone else a favor and don’t bother dissing a league that you haven’t seen and probably never will.

    Personally I’m looking forward to it, and hope the best success for them. I wish there was a team close enough for me to attend games in person, but with Dallas not starting this year, that can’t happen. Hopefully next year, and for many to come. Until then, go Athletica!


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