Join Now | 
HomeAboutContact UsPrivacy & SecurityAdvertise
Soccer America DailySpecial EditionAround The NetSoccer Business InsiderCollege Soccer ReporterYouth Soccer ReporterSoccer on TVSoccer America Classifieds
Paul Gardner: SoccerTalkSoccer America ConfidentialYouth Soccer InsiderWorld Cup Watch
RSS FeedsArchivesManage SubscriptionsSubscribe
Order Current IssueSubscribeManage My SubscriptionRenew My SubscriptionGift Subscription
My AccountJoin Now
Tournament CalendarCamps & AcademiesSoccer GlossaryClassifieds
Where Is The New Women's Soccer League?
August 6th, 2007 10:59AM

MOST READ

MOST COMMENTED


By Marilyn Childress

With the FIFA Women's World Cup to kick off September 10 in China, where is the build-up for the new women's professional soccer league? I am very concerned about the 2008 start date as previously announced by the Women's Soccer Initiative Inc. I was so excited when I heard that there was a strong effort to bring back the play we all enjoyed during the WUSA.

Recently I tried to find more specific information on the new league. To my despair, I couldn't find out anything new. I searched the Internet for the promotions that you would expect a league starting in the spring to have for the fans, sponsors, and media. The websites that are dedicated to women's soccer have very little buzz.

The Women's Soccer Initiative Inc. press announcement in April seemed premature. Some of the investors have been identified, but much of the league's operations do not appear to be in place. Not even all of the markets and owners seem firm. The lack of organizational foundation in place has me concerned. As a promoter of women's soccer, I do not want to see another league start and fail. Soccer in the United States cannot withstand such failure. Women's sports cannot tolerate such failure.

Although the business model for the new league has not been revealed to the public, speculation is that it will be similar in part to the WNBA model by collaborating with the MLS. I hope this isn't the entire business plan. The NBA has started pulling back on the financial support of the WNBA. Although the WNBA is still part of the NBA, local, individual ownership is the trend. It has consistently proved very challenging to run two teams out of one front office.

The minimum for women's soccer success in the United States would be to have a business plan that allows at least two years of fully funded operations. This allows proper marketing and having operational front offices for the league and each team. This period allows time to build season ticket sales, to line up sponsors, and to promote the coach and players. The business plan needs to be financially reasonable for the long-term growth of the league. Owners and investors must have return on their investment, but profits should not be expected in the short term.

Everyone in soccer needs to be part of the success of a new women's league. Fans need to be vocal by spending money to buy tickets and supporting sponsors by buying their products. They need to watch games either in person, on TV, or any other media available. They also need to support the NCAA women's tournament.

Owners need to be realistic. Know your market. Know what will and will not work. An unstable beginning will lead to disappointment. I also hope that those existing organizations with women's minor-leagues and those interested in professional women's soccer will pool their talents to form a single, stable organization.

Marilyn Childress, owner of Childress Enterprises, Inc., a Georgia-based manufacturing and consulting business, is a women's soccer pioneer having led the effort to add women's soccer as an Olympic sport for the 1996 Summer Games in Atlanta. She was also instrumental in developing U.S. Soccer's Women's Professional Standards. She owns Women's Intersport Network, an Atlanta, GA consulting advocate for women's sports. She can be contacted at childress7711@att.net



No comments yet.

Sign in to leave a comment. Don't have an account? Join Now




AUTHORS

ARCHIVES
FOLLOW SOCCERAMERICA

Recent Soccer Business Insider
Donovan case study: turning a negative into a positive    
So what's happens to a star from a marketing perspective when things go wrong? How do ...
Top 10 soccer television stories of the year    
It is almost impossible to go a day without finding live soccer somewhere on television. Most ...
U.S. Soccer renews Nike deal through 2022    
Nike, a U.S. Soccer partner since 1995, will be providing men's and women's national team uniforms ...
Mizuno cleats hit U.S. market     
Mizuno, the century-old Japanese company that entered the U.S. market in 1961 and has specialized in ...
Signs of progress on D.C. stadium plans    
The proposal for the D.C. United stadium to be built in Washington's Buzzard Point neighborhood could ...
Miami 'giddy' about soccer, New York? Not so much    
Miami-Dade County commissioners have demonstrated their support for soccer. Just what that gets David Beckham and ...
NYCFC eyes Bronx stadium site; Miami Beckham United gets on agenda    
It will take an Edwin Moses-type to cleanly clear all the hurdles that lie ahead for ...
MLS Cup viewers on UniMas surpass those on ESPN    
Saturday's MLS Cup drew the fewest English-language viewers on record, so few in fact that the ...
Team Beckham eyes Miami stadium site by the bay    
You can't say David Beckham doesn't think big.
FIFA-adidas partnership extended through 2030    
The World Cup and adidas are synonymous, their relationship going back to the 1970 World Cup ...
>> Soccer Business Insider Archives