Monday, May 14, 2007

Issue 417 - Is This British Woman A Result Of U.S. Dominance?


I hope everything is ok where you are.

I went to see a football game yeserday.
In the stadium about 20 minutes away from me, the England Women were playing.
It was fascinating, and I could see a lot of parallels between the state of women's football in this country, and the state of curling here too.
The English beat Northern Ireland 4-0 in front of just under 4,000 fans.
Not bad attendance that.

Plenty of food for newsletter material there, and I will undoubtedly come back to the fact that a lot of our players still have other jobs to hold down!
Today though I want to tie in the game yesterday with an article I wrote recently, so here it is...

Is This British Woman The Result Of U.S. Dominance?

The British woman? Jacqui Oatley.
The sport? Football.
The date? April 21st 2007.

The main highlights show for the British national game of football had a first in its' 43 year history in April 2007 - the first commentary by a woman.

The decision was criticised in many quarters, but not from me, I think she did a good job.
Like most new male commentators, she worked her way up the ranks after studying journalism, and she also has experience of playing the game, being a keen player until she dislocated a kneecap and ruptured tendons.

That's the focus of this article, the fact that she played football.
Womens' football in this country was always viewed as a novelty, in fact it was banned on our grounds until only a few years ago.

To be honest, it's still treated here as 'the girls having a go', although that is very slowly changing.

This has been driven by the US, where the womens' game has been popular for a long time at school level, with the senior national team achieving World Cup success.

The market in the US for the mens' game has been famously resistant for the last 30 years at least, and I'm convinced it was the growth of the womens' game that prompted the growth in that market of the mens' game.

Football is the biggest growing game in the US at junior level, and the money men have not been slow to recognise the potential when all those players grow up!

Several of the top teams in England have been bought out by US interests, most noticeably Manchester United.
Both of the teams in Jacqui Oatley's first game fielded US players.

Good luck to her, I say.
The decision to use a female commentator for our flagship football programme is long overdue, and I suspect it was helped by the growing popularity of the game with women here.

She also got there, by hard work, passion and determination.
Was she ultimately helped by the money driving the sport in the US and the womens' game there?
Possibly, but she's also there on skill at what she does.

There you go.

I've also been playing around with youtube videos for the first time.
You don't have to be super polished to post videos, here's a test version of mine, which you can see was knocked up in my kitchen:

Right, that's it for this week, are you using youtube for free traffic?

'Til next time,
Health and Happiness,
P.S. If you know anyone else who you think would enjoy the
Great Gordino Newsletter, please pass it on to them!

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