The US women footballers are ready to make a return at a Summer tournament. The National Women's Soccer League hopes to start the postponed tournament without spectators. This will capture the essence of the new normal, of how fans will now have to adjust to live sports amid a pandemic. The League is scheduled to be starting this season on June 27. Thus, it will be the first US team sports league to return after the COVID-19 lockdown.
Earlier, the NWSL 2020 season was officially postponed due to the nationwide lockdown. However, now it will be back to host a 25-game tournament for the Challenge Cup, the NWSL’s yearly championship. "As our country begins to safely reopen and adjust to our collective new reality -- and with the enthusiastic support of our players, owners as well as our new and current commercial partners -- the NWSL is thrilled to bring professional soccer back to the United States," NWSL commissioner Lisa Baird said.
The tournament will start on June 27 and could go on for a month. It will have all nine NWSL teams playing and fighting it out for the prestigious trophy.
- The National Women’s Soccer League announced to start the season after the COVID-19 lockdown, will be the first the US team sport to return to play.
- The National Women's Soccer League, set to start from June 27, will host a 25-game tournament without spectators.
- “US Soccer is supportive of the NWSL's decision to bring professional women’s soccer back to the field,” said a statement released by US Soccer, which recently won a dismissal of the USWNT’s equal-pay lawsuit.
Supporting the NWSL’s plan
US Soccer, which recently won a dismissal of the USWNT’s equal pay lawsuit, said in a statement, “U.S. Soccer is supportive of the NWSL's decision to bring professional women’s soccer back to the field. Throughout the collaborative planning process, U.S. Soccer has worked closely with the NWSL and the USWNT Players Association to focus on the health and safety of the players, both regarding COVID-19 and the physical aspects of the players returning to a preseason and tournament competition, and ensure that each player would have the option of participating in the event".
US women footballers suffered a major setback in its gender discrimination lawsuit against the US Soccer Federation as they lost the case.
The statement further added, “Everyone at the league and individual clubs have put in a tremendous amount of hard work to make sure the environment in Utah will be as safe as possible for all involved, and we are looking forward to the return of the NWSL as women’s soccer continues to grow and prosper."
Following quarantine protocols
The first round of games will be played at Utah's Zions Bank Stadium. Before the games start, every player and staff member will have to adhere to the protocols. They will be tested 48 hours prior to departure for Utah and after their arrival in Utah. There will also be consistent testing, temperature readings and symptom review in Utah. "We're hoping to provide a safe, comfortable environment for all the players," Utah Royals captain Amy Rodriguez said.
Feature Image Credit: The Guardian