The Women’s Football World Cup. What an absolute joy
2 July 2019 19:33pm
Coverage of women's football has been building momentum over the last few years, and with the current World Cup it seems to have pushed on through to the other side, with every one of the 52 games being shown across the BBC.
I’ve watched a bit of women’s football before this World Cup, but it’s only ever been in passing. I would never have previously rushed home on my bike to watch a women’s match - I will tonight. This world cup has totally captured my imagination.
As a branding agency, I should probably talk about the kits, there’s always a lot of talk about kit designs when a World Cup comes around, and this one is no different. I’m a big fan of the retro Germany home kit, the polka dotted France away kit, and the gradiented Norway home kit - there are loads of stylish kits to choose from… go check them out!
As a football lover, I’m personally more interested in the game itself. The beautiful game. This World Cup I’ve seen skills, commitment, excitement, quality, passion, and most importantly, top notch entertainment. This England team is good. We’re 3rd in the World on the FIFA rankings - I’ve looked it up and everything. We really are very good.
The other day against Norway, Ellen White (joint World Cup top scorer so far) was totally hacked down, but there was no rolling around, no feigning injury, no imaginary card waving, just tough as nails, back up on her feet without a quibble. And this seems to be pretty much across the board in the women's game. There’s a big learning here for some (well, more than some) of the gentlemen... the beautiful game is at its most beautiful when played in the right spirit.
We won that game 3-0. Great result. It could have been more. We made a good Norwegian side look average. Lucy Bronze’s strike was something to behold. Next up is the team’s second consecutive World Cup semi-final, coupled with the men managing to get a semi-final last summer - it appears to be a golden era for English football.
The women’s game has come a long way, but there’s always room for improvement. Like most sports it needs investment. Investment in referees (note the chaos of the England Cameroon game), investment in grass roots, investment in people. This can be built on the wave of interest that’s been swelling for a while, which in turn encourages investment from big brands. I won’t go into the marketing stats here (they are all over the web) but it’s clear brands have begun to realise how lucrative this could be, and hopefully this World Cup will cement their vision and lead to a re-evaluation of the mis-alignment between investment in men’s and women’s football. We need to stop talking about how important this is for the women’s game - it undoubtedly is, but it’s bigger than that, it’s imperative for the game of football full stop.
Today is semi-final day. The USA (the current World Champions - ranked 1st in the World and smashing all sorts of records recently) beat France (the hosts - ranked 4th in the World) 2-1, so we face the best team in the World in the semi-final. They’ve now won 10 consecutive World Cup games. They’ve only lost 1 of their last 42 games. It will be our toughest game by far. But hey, we’ve beaten them before, you never know, a World Cup Final is there for the taking, we’re playing unbelievably well. COME ON ENGLAND!
Vern Edmonds - Managing Partner / Founder @ Halo