One of our writers reflects on the intensity and excitement of covering 15 transformative matches in 34 days
Equal pay! Equal pay!
I knew I would be watching history this summer. After all, it was to be the biggest ever edition of the Womens World Cup, a turning point in the development of the womens game and the best showcase of its improving quality. But as the crowd joined the US womens national team in sending the chant for equal pay echoing around the Stade de Lyon, the magnitude of the effect of this competition started to sink in. The tournament was expected to break new ground on the pitch and spur footballing change off it, but no one could have predicted the extent to which the players themselves would use their four-yearly platform to demand more than they were being given.
I tweeted Im having the time of my life during the final. I was. Five weeks in France, and a journey which ultimately began with being asked to write a weekly womens football blog in June 2017, had reached a momentary conclusion. For someone who relishes writing about the social and political effects of sport, the sporting and lets be realistic political victory of Megan Rapinoe and her US teammates was liberating.
Its hard to describe the experience of covering a first World Cup. With childcare carefully coordinated, I sped into the Gare du Nord on the Eurostar keen to start bathing in the tournament atmosphere. Yet, seemingly, France was indifferent. There were Roland Garros tennis banners lining the Champs Elyse and posters advertising the French mens national team matches in the autumn peppered around the metro, but the absence of Womens World Cup branding was stark.
Fifa had already been embroiled in a ticketing fiasco in which families had been seated separately, and which was only solved, extremely late in the day, by the complete recall and reissuing of tickets for affected games. Now it, or at least the local organising committee, had shown a disappointing level of interest in building any kind of tournament hype. And so, where the tournament build-up had been dominated by coverage of England, now attention turned to the deficiencies of the organisations responsible for hosting the showpiece competition.
More would follow. The introduction of the video assistant referee and new rules on handball and penalty kicks prompted much debate, and sparsely filled stadiums only served to reinforce the idea that not enough had been done to promote the tournament on home soil. For me, 15 matches in 34 days meant these issues, and the football itself, were experienced in a whirlwind of travel (four planes, eight trains, eight hire cars), typing and questionable levels of sleep. Now and again the editors would check in. Did I need a break? Was the latest request one too many? Could they take anything off me? Probably yes, but there was no way I was saying it. Rest was for after.
I have not covered a mens tournament, but by all accounts the camaraderie and collaboration between journalists here a mixture of young womens football writers and older, battle-hardened national writers more traditionally from the mens game was refreshing. At its centre was an entertaining England media WhatsApp group – set up for logistics, but instantly home to social organising and constant banter.
Original Article : HERE ;
This post was curated & Posted using : RealSpecific
Interested in building a blog or auto-blog like this one ? Or just want to order one ? Join our "Blogging Tips Tricks and Resources Skype" Group and let's chat about it.
Interested in Starting your own Roku TV Channel ? Or interested in learning how to build one ? Join our "Roku TV Channel Development" Skype Group and let's chat about it.
If you enjoyed our content, we'd really appreciate some "love" with a share or two.
And ... Don't forget to have fun!