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A different FIFA World Cup: Talent of PH women’s football team takes center stage 

by Amiel Guiteng

Recently updated on April 24, 2023 02:37 pm

The upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup slated for July 2023 in Australia and New Zealand is already causing a stir among football aficionados worldwide. 

The long-awaited quadrennial event, with 32 nations competing, is anticipated to differ from the recently wrapped FIFA Men’s World Cup in several ways. 

One of the most remarkable distinctions is the absence of WAGs, or wives and girlfriends, which will undoubtedly highlight the exceptional football skills and athleticism of the female players. Additionally, the historic debut of the Philippine Women’s National Football Team (PWNFT) in this tournament will provide another thrilling dimension to the already riveting competition.

No More WAGs: A Shift in Focus

In men’s football, the term “WAGs” is used to refer to the “Wives And Girlfriends” of male footballers, who have become a glamorous fixture of the sport off the field. 

However, the same cannot be said for the partners of players in the Women’s World Cup, as there is no widely recognized term for them, with “HABs” (Husbands and Boyfriends) or “WAPs” (Wives and Partners) only being used occasionally. This may be due to differences in media coverage, public attention, and the drive for increased professionalism in women’s football.

The absence of such distractions in the Women’s World Cup nonetheless presents a unique charm, providing an opportunity to focus on the unparalleled skills and hard work of female athletes, rather than any off-the-pitch controversies or gossip. 

As women’s football continues to grow and attract more attention, it is unlikely that the focus on personal lives will play as significant a role as they do in the men’s game. With more and more countries investing in their women’s football programs and recognizing the contributions of female players, the Women’s World Cup has the potential to become a celebration of female excellence in the sport, with a focus solely on showcasing the players’ talents on the global stage. 

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The Philippine Women’s Team: Making History

The Philippine Women’s National Football Team has punched its ticket to the FIFA Women’s World Cup, marking the first time a Filipino football team has made it to a major international tournament. The road to this point has been challenging, but the Filipinas persevered and worked their cleats off to elevate their game. This groundbreaking achievement is a monumental milestone for female athletes in the Philippines, serving as an inspiration for future generations.

With the World Cup looming, everyone is eager to see how the PWNFT will stack up against some of the world’s top teams. The team’s impressive gold medal win at the AFF Women’s Championship last July 2022 has raised expectations for their World Cup debut. 

With rock stars like Eva Madarang, Sarina Bolden, and Quinley Quezada leading the charge, the team is poised to make waves and showcase their skills on the grandest stage of all. 

It is also important to recognize the contributions of everyone involved in the team’s journey, including the coaches and the support staff. One thing is for sure: these women will not back down and will fight hard to make their mark in the tournament. 

Shattering Stereotypes: Women’s Soccer on the Rise

Women’s football has been on the rise, and the Philippine Women’s National Football Team’s qualification for the FIFA Women’s World Cup highlights the potential of female athletes in developing countries, especially with the right support and resources. 

Their participation is not only a source of pride for Filipinos worldwide, but could also have a significant impact on the growth of women’s football both in the country and globally. It could inspire more girls and women to take up the sport and lead to increased investment in women’s football programs and infrastructure.

At its core, the upcoming Women’s World Cup is more than just a sporting event, it is also a chance to rewrite the narrative on longstanding stereotypes and gender biases in football or athletics as a whole. 

By shifting the spotlight away from personal lives and towards the incredible talent and skill of female footballers, we can celebrate their achievements and underscore the importance of gender equality in sports. 

The tournament’s success could help propel women’s football to unprecedented levels, break down barriers and pave the way for a more equitable future in sports.

Beyond the Field: The Economic and Social Impact of Women’s Soccer

The impact of women’s soccer extends far beyond the pitch. As the sport gains popularity and recognition, it has the potential to create significant economic and social benefits.

One of the most striking effects of women’s soccer is its potential to be a valuable source of revenue. 

In the United States, for instance, the 2019 Women’s World Cup generated almost $100 million in TV ad sales alone for Fox and Telemundo, according to Kantar. Women’s soccer can also contribute to the development of local economies through tourism and business. Additionally, women’s soccer can create job opportunities in various fields, including coaching, broadcasting, and event management.

Beyond economic benefits, the sport can have a profound social impact by breaking down gender stereotypes and serving as a catalyst for promoting gender equality in traditionally male-dominated fields. 

Women’s soccer can also promote social cohesion and community building, bringing people together regardless of their backgrounds to support a common cause. This sense of community can help build social bonds and promote understanding and empathy among individuals and groups.

Challenges Ahead: Breaking Barriers and Overcoming Obstacles in Women’s Soccer

Although progress has been made in recent years, women’s soccer still faces major challenges such as unequal pay, lack of media coverage, and sexism. These issues are unjust and hinder female players from receiving the recognition and respect they deserve.

Unfortunately, gender bias is entrenched in media and schools, limiting opportunities for girls to participate in sports. The experiences of Filipino women athletes demonstrate the importance of implementing development programs and providing equal opportunities for all. 

This discrimination extends to professional sports, where women athletes do not receive the same support as their male counterparts, despite being under the same federations. The prize money gap between men and women in the World Cup is a clear example of this injustice. Breaking down these barriers, therefore, is crucial in creating a more inclusive and equal playing field for all athletes.

In the end, the disparity between the men’s and women’s games is a reflection of the broader societal and cultural factors that influence them both. 

However, it is important to recognize that the Women’s World Cup is its own unique event, with its own set of traditions and values. 

As we eagerly await the start of the tournament, it is essential that we show our unwavering support for women’s football, not just during the World Cup but throughout the entire year. The success of the competition hinges on the enthusiasm and support of fans, so let us come together and cheer on the remarkable female athletes who will take to the pitch in July.

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