By Laura Pappano
Let’s get over the woe-is-us tone that shrouds women’s professional soccer. Yesterday’s NY Times story captured the uncertainty league bigwigs feel around the (admittedly) very challenging task of filling soccer stadiums, and getting enough sponsor and ad dollars to give WPS staying power – and in a recession.
What’s troubling, however, is that WPS seems to want something it doesn’t have: raucous, beer-swilling, MLB and NFL fans (read: real fans). You know, the guys sports radio hosts describe as living in their mother’s basements and existing solely to follow every move of their beloved team and call in to talk about it?
It explains the origin of “fan” – that is “fanatic.”
In the Times story, Boston Breakers director of business development Andy Crossley says, “We need to get out of the ghetto of being a role model for girls.”
The quote was in the context of wanting to reach the men (again, read: real fans) who are taking the pony-tailed, soccer-playing daughters to games.
I dare say there’s not an exec in Major League Baseball who wants to get out of the ghetto of being a role model for boys.