Hollow promises of equality are to blame if the Women’s Super League is canceled | Suzanne Wrack | Soccer | Instant News


Ta few months after the Football Association notified clubs in the Super League and Women’s Championship that it will not offer each specific Covid-19 financial support, making the limitation is almost a previous conclusion, that the final effort was finally discussed. And in one sense it feels too late. But should we see a complete cancellation?

In Germany this Friday, two weeks after the resumption of the men’s Bundesliga, and the same week the fate of the WSL and the Championship is likely to be confirmed, the Frauen-Bundesliga season will continue.

It has been widely reported that players and clubs in the WSL and Championship don’t want to see the rest of the season, even though it was only last Wednesday the club was finally asked to consider a formal cancellation and nuance of that. But there are serious questions that must be asked about the role of the FA, the Premier League and Premier League clubs in paving the way for that.

The DFB and DFL – the German FA and the league, respectively – have banded together to provide support in all sports, including elite women’s games. In England, the Premier League, where the FA has been touting the WSL, does not show such solidarity.

Suggesting similar actions to Germany for English games was extreme, radical and unrealistic. The short-term expenditure required to complete the season safely comes with a warning that there may be long-term financial implications. The idea that there might be a way to generate new income or encourage the biggest Premier League clubs to make the same financial sacrifices as the best Bundesliga clubs for the greater good and health of the game, and in the name of equality, never seems to be on the table.

FA and the Premier League will talk about equality and “football for all” but it looks like the asterisk needs to be attached and footnotes saying “unless he asks questions about the strength and morale of the Premier League which is driven by the market”.

Two questions that were asked of clubs at the WSL and Championship last week were whether the club might be able to meet the safety requirements needed to complete the season and whether they had the financial resources to do so. We have the opposite of German solidarity, with the responsibility of each club to conjure their way through this crisis. It has an effect on morale. If the club is afraid they cannot provide a safe environment, and players feel their club cannot do it without help, of course they will support the cancellation.

Lack of financial support, a long period of uncertainty and unwillingness to pool football resources to navigate this crisis means feedback to FA questions will likely only go one way, because they have been engineered to make the solution impossible, risky and frightening.

If we assume the league will be canceled, then what? A bonus for the FA if the club supports determining the league based on the table when standing or using points per game formula is that there is little movement. Any PPG formula, weighted or not weighted, will make Chelsea surpass Manchester City with the WSL title. With Chelsea not playing every team in the league, a difficult match against Everton that is extraordinary, City will feel really sad. Any version of the table puts both of them in the driver’s seat for the Champions League places.

However, with only 71.9% of WSL games and 67.3% of Championship games being completed, it’s hard to see, in a league with 12 and 11 teams, and where one game can dramatically change position, how any formula can provide fair results.

The bigger decision is whether to continue promotion and degradation. Aston Villa are six points ahead of Sheffield United at the top of the Championship, while Liverpool are below the WSL standings, one point behind Birmingham after playing one more game. There will be pressure for Liverpool to avoid the drop and there are legitimate arguments for WSL expansion. But to promote and not be degraded is very inconsistent and contrary to efforts to ensure the integrity of the sport is maintained. It will also leave the second tier with 10 teams next season. In the nine-month season, the Championship club will be expected to build momentum and support with an average of one home league match a month.

The effect of this decision was insignificant. Why? Because it will be dwarfed by the impact of the decision to avoid equity.

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