I get it. You’re old enough to remember Mia Hamm when she was selected to the National team at 15, 90s enough to remember Michelle Akers and her “I used to drink Tab” head of curls and the golden boot in ‘91, and certainly fan enough to remember Brandi Chastain rip her shirt off after the ‘99 World Cup Final. I get it. You are all #SHEBELIEVES #USWNT #SCORETOSETTLE …because YOU get it.
Or, maybe not. Maybe those names and these photos mean nothing to you …except Hamm, because she did that commercial with Jordan. And furthermore, to you, the Women’s World Cup is boring. Slow. Meh. And the only names you know to throw around at the water cooler are a TMZ version of who’s hot or not hot enough …or even girl enough.
And then maybe, JUST MAYBE you are in another category altogether. You get soccer – enough. You watch EPL when you go out for brunch. Or maybe you played in high school (or not – whatever) but had a helluva time last summer with the boys and #Ibelievethatwewillwin and #thingsTimHowardcouldsave. And somewhere over the course of the past couple of weeks you dipped your toe in and the water felt pretty great. The timing at happy hour was solid and with the sound on and plenty of fans in red, white and blue ….so was the atmosphere.
You may have even been interested enough to check in on the other semi final, ENGLAND v JAPAN, last night and, like me, shed a little tear for an England side and a great player who deserved so much more than the final result. Ugh, that one still hurts me a little today.
USA will face Japan in the mother of all redemption matches on Sunday, July 5 at 7pm ET/4pm PT. And you’re all-in now. Bandwagon? Maybe. But it’s July 4th weekend and your country is playing for a world title …not like a baseball faux world series title, but a REAL world title against Japan! Can’t get any more ‘merican than that!
Endorsement deals and viewership are all up … a feat in women’s sports never to be taken for granted. Little girls will be watching Sunday -which is a very good thing. But little boys, grown men and the American Outlaws, the largest organization of USA soccer supporters, will be watching at soccer bars like Fado too, which is even better.
Point is, we aren’t really talking about a bandwagon, like Miami and Cleveland fans crying over their Lebron James. Blah – who cares. No. We’re talking about the US Women’s National Team and they aren’t going anywhere. Fans aren’t switching sides either.
During this 2015 World Cup campaign, the USWNT is just getting another spark of support that will keep the sport moving forward.
...and make no mistake, there will be fireworks this weekend. The Yanks are coming!