It’s been such a crappy week in American sports, especially when it comes to women’s issues, that the world just felt like it had to get in on the action.
FIFA and world soccer are no strangers to seriously head-scratching behavior when it comes to the standards of equal rights in 2014. Heck, even the official FIFA magazine perpetuates stereotypes from several decades ago that women can’t understand or shouldn’t play soccer.
And now, less than a year before the next Women’s World Cup, the manager of one of the richest and most recognizable clubs in the world has come out and plainly said that soccer is not a sport for girls.
Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti was commenting on an upcoming derby matchup with Atletico Madrid when the topic of Atletico’s physical style came up. That’s when Ancelotti unleashed this blunder:
“Atletico are not a violent team – they are intense and aggressive,” the Italian said at a press conference ahead of Saturday’s clash at the Santiago Bernabeu.
“Football is a sport for men, it is not a game for girls.”
A) How are there still people that think this way?
B) How are there people who feel like it’s ok to say these things in public??
It’s really quite infuriating and saddening to see these off-the-cuff remarks, especially from someone who holds so much power and influence.
The fact that this kind of attitude that exists at the highest levels of world soccer is what’s really discouraging and shows just how much of an archaic mindset exists in sports. And it’s not just an NFL problem. Has Ancelotti just totally been in the dark about the fact that women play soccer? And they even have their own very successful World Cup? This is the sentiment of a buffoon.
I wish Abby Wambach and Marta would show up at Real Madrid’s next game and dare Ancelotti to say soccer’s not for them and see if he would say it to their face.