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Sexism in Football

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This article is a submission for the Soccerlens Football Writing Competition; to participate, please read the details here.

Written by Julia.

Oh please, it’s no longer a guys’ world.

Yes indeed, you’ve probably heard it all. The feminists who stand out time and time again to demand for equal rights since forever have said everything there is to know about sexism. True, we strive for that perfect equilibrium where men and women are treated with the same respect and attention and whatnots, but we can never deny that this will never happen. In the working world it is no secret that a male commands a higher paycheck than the female, regardless of job abilities. Women will always be seen as ‘the fairer sex’, and this mindset definitely isn’t going to change in a matter of years. Even women see themselves as the weaker ones, and that is exactly why women always demand for help when it comes to physical work.

Reality is cruel, and age old concepts that have existed long before our time can never be changed that easily. We accept that sexism still exists, probably not in the context of the women of a hundred years ago, but it is indeed evident in our society today. In the football world, there is no exception.

Sexism is definitely rampant in football. The misconception that females watch the game solely for the ‘hot guys’ is present in the minds of most men, and I do not deny that there are the females around who do nothing but prove this misconception right. However, the generalization that ALL women are like this is something that I stand against. (Strongly too, if I might add.)

More often than not, I get into arguments. Be it with my peers or someone I could have just met, we tend to argue about football. Sure, there are neither hard feelings nor personal attacks, but when we defend the team we love we try to shoot the other team down. The days after football matches are the worst, especially when my team has played against his. One side loses, and even if the result is a draw we still have plenty to argue about — which team had the better performance and actually deserved to win, which player had this ridiculous action that should never have gone unpunished, which decision the referee made had been wrong etc. We talk about it over lunch, and as more people start to join us the conversation gets heated and we raise our voices.

‘Manchester United were far better, Chelsea was just pathetic,’ said he.

‘We weren’t! We would have won it if Mourinho hadn’t taken out Joe Cole, he could have worked with Robben and our attack would have been stronger with the strong support from the sides! It was a wrong tactic.’ I argued.

Then he stares at me, speechless. He widens his eyes, and asks, ‘How do you know all these? Girls aren’t supposed to know things like these; I thought you merely supported Chelsea because you liked Frank Lampard.’

Of course, the feeling that surges in me when I left him speechless and shocked was sweet, and perhaps held a tinge of unexplainable victory. Even so, it irks me when guys blanket all girls as people who support the club for this certain good-looking player. I do find Frank Lampard good-looking, oh yes, but if he wasn’t this inspirational and powerful for Chelsea, with such splendid performances that win games for us, without a doubt I would have wished him out of my team. I follow Chelsea because of their wonderful team spirit, their drive and their team play (yes, disagree all you want) and not for a player. With the news of Mourinho leaving Chelsea rampant of late, what I would like to quote from everywhere is this.

‘Managers and players come and go, but a club and a fan is forever.’

It is pointless supporting a club because of a good-looking player, or even a skillful player, you have to love the team. Yes, even girls understand that. Besides, a girl can love her team as much as any guy can, she can cheer for them and spur them on with the same passion as any guy will, and she can fall in love with the beautiful game just as deeply as any guy does.

Move over, it’s no longer a male-dominated stage.

This article is a submission for the Soccerlens Football Writing Competition; to participate, please read the details here.

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