I've been watching the FIFA Women's World Cup recently. Quite impressive, I don't see it being any less entertaining than the men's world cup and it doesn't have any feigned injuries (so far), which is nice.
Some very talented players. I've wondered a bit about segregation by sex in sports. My understanding is that in most fields, women would not be competitive enough to hardly ever make it into the top ten. This is a bit sad to see and I may be mistaken, but seems to often be the case.
That said, the gap seems to be less in soccer. I reckon that the FIFA women's teams could compete with some of the FIFA men's teams, but most likely the upper tier vs the lower tier. It's also a bit more dangerous, the mass differences between men and women in soccer are probably 30-50%. Of course it depends, you can have a team of big women and a team of small men about the same size. The greater the discrepancy, the higher chance of injury for the smaller people (or so I think).
Netherlands vs Cameroon was interesting. Cameroon was rude, didn't show remorse for fouls, had 3x the number of fouls at the end of the game, didn't play well, had poor teamwork, and just played like they had nothing to prove. Netherlands slaughtered them, thankfully. Sweden vs Thailand was also very one sided. Thailand just wasn't nearly as talented or organized, but they were graceful and both teams played a clean game. They had a few good players and one star player. Sweden had a fantastic striker who later became the team captain.
Most recent game I watched was USA vs Chile. Both great games, but the US won by a very large margin. That said, the Chilean goal keeper was unbelievable. I think she could compete well in men's FIFA.
Thinking about sports popularity in the US, I think a lot of it may have to do with advertizing. Soccer is a hard one to play ads on. American football has all kinds of breaks and stops. Baseball and basketball also have lots of opportunity for commercials. But soccer has only the halftime. Too much to miss if you played commercials any other time. To me, it's a vastly better game. American football seems like they kept adding rules to a stupid game until they found a way to make it have some sort of balance and playability. It's not nearly as fun to watch (and more dangerous to play) than soccer. Soccer encourages real athletes, not 300lb quarterbacks. Baseball can be fun to watch sometimes, but just in general I think soccer is a much more enjoyable spot to watch. Certainly just my opinion, go and watch them yourself and make up your own mind. If you want to watch TV, which in my opinion is usually a bit of a waste.
I think I'd like to play soccer sometime. I played when I was young, but I was absolutely terrible. Six seasons and a final score of negative one.
I think sports can be bad for viewers and sometimes good for the players. American football worship is unbelievable. A bunch of overweight fans cheering for something they could never do, themselves. Completely corporate and sponsored. I don't say that I never enjoy watching the Super Bowl from time to time, but NFL seems vastly overrated. TV should help encourage you to do things, not become the thing you "just do". Everyone needs to wind down sometimes, but sometimes an excessive need to wind down is from an excessively stressful life in the first place.
I would like to see men and women compete more directly to encourage reality. But having the segregated teams does give opportunity that they may not have otherwise. And what would a mixed sex adult team look like? Probably an orgy party. And I think like with women in the military, it'd be very, very hard to be objective around women on the same team or the opponent's. Either being too kind or not aggressive enough. This itself isn't a final argument and I'm not saying it could never be overcome, but it certainly seems like a reality to me.
If you do want to watch sports on TV, I highly recommend soccer. The American women's team is quite competitive, unlike our men's team. Apparently there's some controversy about pay on the women's team and it may likely be true. Which is a shame if they are able to win the cups and our men's team gets eliminated early on. But a lot of it may come down to viewership: is the failing US men's team actually more watched than the winning US women's team?
These aren't all my original thoughts by any means at all. My Dad brought up some of this. He's a great man and an even better father.
Anyway, Happy Father's Day!
Thanks for reading.