Women’s Professional Soccer (WPS) kicked off its inaugural season less than a week ago. Although the league is technically less than a week old, it actually has a long history. The idea for the league was hatched more than five years ago in September 2003. Now, due to the dedication of Women’s Soccer Initiative, Inc. and thousands of fans, top flight women’s pro soccer is back, hopefully to stay.
WPS currently features seven teams from across the nation and has three other teams set to join in 2010. Each franchise is indpendently owned and operated by investors in each market. Teams were allocated players from the US National Team, drafted international superstars, conducted a general draft and finalized their rosters. Despite its short history, WPS is already one of the most (if not the most) competetive women’s leagues in the world.
The league’s commissioner, Tonya Antonucci, has been brokering some big time deals for the league to ensure its financial success. Under her watchful eye, WPS brokered a lucrative sponsorship deal with PUMA and established a multi-year partnership with FSC to weekly televise a Sunday night game. By approaching expansion cautiously, Antonucci and her fellow executives are building a stable league and avoiding the pitfalls that derailed WUSA .
Over the next seven days, I will be introducing you to the teams of WPS. For each squad, I will give you some information about (1) their history, (2) their coach, (3) their players, (4) their venue, and (5) their chances of success in 2009. On the eighth day I will provide you with some insight into the league’s 2010 expansion and its overall future. So, please come back to STO over the next eight days to learn about the teams of WPS.
(04/03) Boston Breakers
(04/04) Chicago Red Stars
(04/05) FC Gold Pride
(04/06) L.A. Sol
(04/07) St. Louis Athletica
(04/08) Sky Blue F.C.
(04/09) Washington Freedom
(04/10) Future Expansion
We must support this league, ladies and gentlemen.
Let’s all help to make it a success.