We hear that the FFA’s media department put a hold on all of the Westfield W League clubs allowing one of their players to be photographed in a sexy way for a sports publication. The reason being that they do not want the game to be portrayed in this way, it is to be promoted as ‘healthy and fun.’
Whereas I think there are many that do not wish to see women simply portrayed as sex objects, had the photo shoot had been monitored to portray sexy and athletic, this could have been fantastic publicity for the women’s game.
The radio station on which “Not The Footy Show” airs was asked to try and find the sponsorship dollars to broadcast the Perth Glory Women’s home games, but regrettably the market perception of Women’s football is not an up to date one. By that we mean that they are still not regarded as athletes to be respected and supported. This is very sad especially when you consider that Australia – the Matildas – is one of the top women’s sides in the world now, and has some of the best female players.
Sexy may not be the way to go in terms of promoting this side of the world game or the athletes, but they need help to change the image that people have in their minds of female footballers. Therefore we need to make key personnel ambassadors for the game.
Women’s hockey is equally as successful on the pitch, but they have used healthy, athletic and feminine images to help promote their game. It has maintained interest and media coverage as well as helping participation numbers grow.
The FFA maybe need to talk to the likes of Hockey Australia and use similar methods to maximise the exposure of the women’s game, as these girls deserve it. Like many of their counterparts their dedication is immense and their pay a pittance.
The key thing is a strategy is needed to promote the women’s game and to create role models. I believe an opportunity, which had it been controlled has been missed.