International Football

Women's Football in England

T SaadiQ KamaliCorrespondent IJuly 16, 2008

You don’t hear much about women’s soccer in England. In the same way you don't hear much about rugby, cricket, golf, or tennis, compared with how much you hear about the English Premier League.

Then, too, women’s football in the birthplace of the sport still molts from mores long since debunked overseas. In a country more modernized than America in various categories, England has no Title IX.

Just as the U.S. Congress passed Title IX in 1972, English soccer’s governing body, the Football Association, lifted a 50-year ban on women’s matches.

The two best-known women’s footballers in Britain are probably Keira Knightley and Parminder Nagra from "Bend It Like Beckham"—who are, um, actresses.

It has budged, however, to where you can find discussions of actual World Cup play, which has aired on the BBC during the daytime. When there’s discussion, it often congeals to outright dismay at the caliber of goalkeeping, particularly with the Argentina squad that lost 11-0 to Germany and 6-1 to England.

Women's football will take years to develop a general following, but has made major strides since the FA took over the operation in the late 90's.

All I can say is, you've come a long way baby.

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