Where’s is the womens game you ask?
With the retirement of Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy, Carla Overbeck, and Brandi Chastain womens soccer has taken a hit and lies way below the radar.
The college game is priority while a poorly designed set up for failure WUSA professional womens league is long gone.
This past Sunday the U.S. Womens National team won the Gold Cup over Canada 2-1 and have advanced to the 2007. The crowd was sparse at the Home Depot Center and a far cry from the energized fans who used to come out and watch Hamm and co.
US coach Greg Ryan has been successful in grooming a number of younger womens players into the squad like Natasha Kai, Lori Chalupny, Heather O’Reilly, Carli Lloyd, Hope Solo (current number one goalkeeper over Briana Scurry), and Leslie Osborne.
Osborne in fact has taken to the defensive midfield role vacated by Shannon Boxx in fine fashion and scored in the final against Canada along with Kristine Lilly.
Lilly and Abby Wambach are the two dominating figures on the team but at the 2007 World Cup youth could be king.
Look for the U.S. Women to go into a four month residency camp from April-July with numerous domestic games around the country being played to prepare the team and to hopefully again spike interest before the women head off to the Far East for the World Cup finals. Expect the to make a visit to Houston .
The question is can womens soccer make a bigger impact out of it’s strong participatory culture or are we dreaming to think a womens professional league can be successful?