Thursday, April 18, 2024
US women act as sports diplomats in World Cup.

US women act as sports diplomats in World Cup.

The Dominance of the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team

With the ninth edition of the FIFA Women’s World Cup now underway in New Zealand and Australia, the U.S. Women’s National Team is favored to win its third consecutive title — something no team, male or female, has ever done in the World Cup.

A History of Success

The U.S. Women’s National Team has won half of all the World Cups that have been played, and they have won or medaled in every World Cup and Olympic Games tournament except one. Another title would put them on par with Brazil in the men’s game as the only teams to win five World Cups.

The Team’s Influence

The team’s on-field success has fueled their social activism and their involvement in sports diplomacy initiatives of the U.S. State Department. Yoav Dubinsky, instructor of sports business at the UO’s Lundquist College of Business, highlights that the players have become an integral part of various programs that promote American lifestyle and values.

Sports Diplomacy and Cultural Influence

A Book on Sports Diplomacy

Yoav Dubinsky recently published a book, titled “Nation Branding and Sports Diplomacy: Country Image Games in Times of Change,” which sheds light on American sports diplomacy, particularly in the wake of Title IX. The law, passed in 1972, ensures equal opportunities for women in college sports, regardless of revenue generation.

Iconic Athletes and Fight for Equality

The success of the U.S. women’s team, especially their triumph in the 1999 World Cup, has brought forth iconic athletes such as Mia Hamm, Brandi Chastain, and Megan Rapinoe, among others. Each player has continued the fight for equality and is seen as a representative standing on the foundation laid by those who preceded them.

U.S. Sports Diplomacy Programs

The U.S. State Department implements several programs utilizing female athletes as cultural ambassadors. One such initiative is the Global Sports Mentoring Program, which invites international leaders to the United States to promote gender equality and receive mentorship. The Sports Envoy Program is another, sending American athletes abroad to serve as cultural ambassadors.

The Privileged Status of the U.S. Women’s Team

Advantages of Title IX

Dubinsky attributes much of the U.S. team’s success to Title IX, which provides them with advantages not enjoyed by teams from other countries. The law mandates that universities provide equal training, facilities, and scholarships for women’s sports, just like they do for revenue-generating men’s college football programs.

Higher Earnings and Open-Market Value

The U.S. women’s team also earns more than players from other countries due to their labor agreement with the U.S. Soccer Federation. However, they must consistently prove their open-market value, which can sometimes lead to backlash.

The Perception and Expectations of the U.S. Women’s National Team

Success Breeds Confidence

The U.S. team’s repeated success has led to an expectation of victory, which can be perceived as arrogance. Dubinsky explains that the players capitalize on their accomplishments to appeal to American audiences and enhance their market value, particularly in terms of TV ratings.

Value for American Lifestyle and Reputation

Despite potential criticism of American policy, the U.S. State Department recognizes the value of the women’s national team in promoting the American lifestyle and projecting the message that American women can succeed in any field, including sports. The team’s success helps strengthen the reputation of the United States.

Overall, the U.S. Women’s National Team’s dominance in soccer has paved the way for their involvement in sports diplomacy initiatives, showcasing American values and promoting gender equality both at home and abroad.

By Tim Christie, University Communications


About Jonty Jackson

Welcome to the exciting world of sports with Jonty Jackson, who with his passion for all things sports-related, delivers engaging and informative posts that keep his readers up-to-date on the latest news, trends, and developments in the world of games and sports. Whether you're a fan of e-gaming, a lover of outdoor adventures, or a die-hard sports enthusiast, Jonty's posts are the perfect place to find the latest updates and insights on your favorite games and sports. Follow him and join the conversation today!

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