Here is a copy of interview I did for LTA Agency.
Q: You have been a long time critic of US Soccer why is it?
SB: Because the federation is guilty of mismanagement when it comes to womenâ€™s football.
Q: In what way?
SB: Their mission statement is to â€œdevelop soccer at all recreational and competitive levels.â€ Ask any WPS, W-League or WPSL club in the country if they have received any assistance in physical infrastructure development or player development. MLS lost money for years and US Soccer directly or through its influence subsidized it for years.
Do you think they will support and rescue the WPS?
The federation has been a beneficiary of the NCAA generosity in facilities development and player development. Imagine where the sport would be today if it wasnâ€™t for the NCAA? Outside of WNT player pool, US Soccer has done nothing for female players and infrastructure development for female players.
Q: But I understand that US Soccer is financially supporting WPS.
SB: No, they are subsidizing part of WNT players salaries.
Q: Why do you think US Soccer is not doing enough to support womenâ€™s soccer?
You must realize that US Soccer is an administrative and representative arm of Soccer United Marketing. As such it focuses on the menâ€™s game and simply does enough to keep the womenâ€™s side quiet. Today, US Soccer, outside of WNT, spends less per registered female player than Chile.
Ask successful womenâ€™s clubs like Ajax America or New Jersey Wildcats how it benefits them to be affiliated with US Soccer. Right now, ask FC Gold Pride how it helped them being affiliated with US Soccer. Do you think what happened to FC Gold Pride would be permitted to happen to LA Galaxy? And LA has lost a lot more money than FC Gold Pride ever would.
If you are an investor in the menâ€™s game you will be subsidized when needed. Not so on the womenâ€™s side.
Q: What can be done to change this?
SB: Nothing will be changed because change would require difficult decisions, choices and action by those involved with and fans of the womenâ€™s game. Those involved in womenâ€™s football in general are content with being neglected and being taken advantage of. It will continue.
Q: Can you be more specific?
US Soccer, SUM and their partners are interested in the bottom line, so all of us involved in womenâ€™s football would need to impact it negatively by boycotting Nike, Adidas, Gatorade and other US Soccer partners. Donâ€™t support the MLS. Demand that US Soccer spends at least 33% of their budget on womenâ€™s football development; supporting womenâ€™s leagues, clubs, creating infrastructure and long term player development. Without financial pressures there will be no change.
But I just canâ€™t imagine that womenâ€™s teams; youth, high school, college, W-League or WPSL would stop buying Nike or Adidas products. Can you imagine, for the good of womenâ€™s football, any US WNT players refusing Nike or Adidas endorsements? Not a chance.
All involved in the womenâ€™s game are content to get the crumbs and that is why the situation is getting worse.
Q: But for Nike and other US Soccer partners it has to make business sense to invest in womenâ€™s soccer.
SB: I agree, and that is why we need to demonstrate to them why it is a smart BUSINESS decision to support womenâ€™s football and a poor BUSINESS decision to ignore it. Companies like Nike spend more money on one basketball athlete than on entire womenâ€™s football in the country.
Q: You must admit that basketball is entirely different from womenâ€™s soccer.
SB: Of course, but it wasnâ€™t so in the 70s. It took a leap of faith for a number of companies to support and grow the NBA and look where it is now. The same is required for WPS but we will have to press and we must start with US Soccer.