Our friend Jonathan Tannenwald reported last night that Concacaf is looking to create a women’s Champions League “in the next few years.”
I’ve written about women’s club soccer on this site before. In fact, my article suggesting that Canada needed to get its ass in gear to create a pro women’s division is the second highest performing article on the site (The CanPL salary article is the only one that tops it).
So, it goes without saying that I’m excited by this development. Expanding international club play on the women’s side should be a priority of every confederation in the world this decade. And, by “this decade,” I mean the 1890s because it always should have been a priority, but I’ll take the 2020s because, well, here we are.
What’s always disheartening, though, is the reaction to these new ideas. And, not from the knuckle-dragging idiots. Idiots are going idiot. Rather, it’s a certain type of ally that is most problematic. Specifically, the “YeahBut” Ally.
“Yeah, I love the women’s game, but this is too soon.”
“Yeah, we need a women’s Champions League, but it will lose too much money.”
“Yeah, Canada needs a pro league, but we have to get the CanPL stabilized first.”
Honestly, who do the YeahButs think they are helping? At least with the Stay in the Kitchen crowd, you can easily identify them and treat them with the scorn they deserve. The YeahButs seem like they are on the right side of history, but are actually undermining everything.
If the YeahButs had their way the NWSL wouldn’t have launched. The WPS and WUSA failed (RIP to my beloved Atlanta Beat), so why try again?
“Yeah, a league would be great, but…”
And, so it is with this. Rather, than looking at the tournament as a potential way to grow the game in parts of the region where it has struggled to get a foothold, they are focused on the fact that the crowds might be small to begin with and that the NWSL teams are just going to win anyway.
First off, if an American WoSo team winning a championship is going to prevent us from playing we might as well just fold up shop then. Have you watched the last few World Cups?
Secondly, the whole idea of growing things is to give them a chance to, um, grow. There aren’t flowers on a seedling. You have to put it in dirt for a while and give it what it needs first.
A women’s version of the Concacaf Champions League would give places like Haiti and Jamaica and, yes, Canada the motivation to get leagues going. It will also offer the Liga MX Femenil teams something to aspire to in the NWSL competion. Sure, there will be some lopsided games when the NWSL teams come in, but you have to start somewhere.
So, don’t be a YeahBut.
Also, bring back the Beat.