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Frank Mitchell

Young women coming into these team games owe a debt of gratitude to those who wore the jerseys in the past

Frank Mitchell


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Action during a FA Women's Super League match between Brighton and Hove Albion and West Ham United

Action during a FA Women's Super League match between Brighton and Hove Albion and West Ham United

PA

Action during a FA Women's Super League match between Brighton and Hove Albion and West Ham United

The BBC has taken ownership of the coverage of women’s football and it has given it the Super League, Match of the Day treatment it so richly deserves. The corporation has come a long way since its treatment of the game on Not the Nine O’Clock News. In the 1980s Mel Smith and Griff Rhys Jones appeared as two bored supporters who complained about the quality of women’s football but wouldn’t leave the stadium until the game was over as they wanted to watch the players swap jerseys. The clip ended with a group of topless women waving to the crowd as they made their way off the pitch. To the eternal shame of BBC comedy it’s for all to see on YouTube.

Eventually those who saw women’s football as little more than an unwelcome intrusion into a male environment began to realise how wrong they had been. Many women are good footballers and some are outstanding. There has been increasing coverage on TV over a number of years but this new season with live matches featuring the biggest clubs and the best players is likely to be a ratings winner.


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