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WPS Exhibition / Regular Season Match in Canada


StrandOne

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It remains to be seen as to whether is as ready for women's pro soccer is here to stay. Now that y'all have burst my bubble let's talk the "BIG EVENT Attendance Numbers" Guessing Game. What are the ATTENDANCE prospects for a single WPS game in Canada this year?

The Voyageurs collective seems to have Vancouver & Toronto as front runners for hosting a single match. Commonwealth Stadium (Edmonton) and Olympic Stadium (Montreal) are the largest venues with great success hosting soccer at this level. But you tell me which CDN city & host seem like the best bet.

Who shall we watch? Let's see... clearly Marta & Sinclair are hard to beat as FC Gold Pride leads the league. So let's pit them against the inaugural champs, Sky Blue FC? Or is there a better match-up amongst the other 6 teams?

How many people are coming out to see Gold Pride vs Sky Blue? 15,000? 35,000? Given that it's the ONLY WOMEN'S game of its caliber in the country as a one-time event in a World Cup year, does it matter if it's a mid-week game vs a Saturday? Do CDN girls know who Sinclair or Marta are? Do they care? Do adult soccer fans care more than the younger fans?

Ok that's a ton of questions so I'll throw my hat in the ring first. Living in Alberta, I'm sticking with Edmonton being the best venue (for reasons stated in previous WPS post). Commonwealth seats 60,000. I'm betting 25,000 would show up to a September exhibition matchup-- as long as Christine Sinclair &/or Marta is there.

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If you put it at BMO I bet you'd get a crowd of 2-5 thousand at most.... people just don't know about these teams in Canada and have no allegance to them. You'd draw a much bigger crowd for a national team game.

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If you put it at BMO I bet you'd get a crowd of 2-5 thousand at most.... people just don't know about these teams in Canada and have no allegance to them. You'd draw a much bigger crowd for a national team game.

In the months preceding each World Cup I know little or nothing about the 32 teams. So I do my homework and catch up on how national sides have progressed thru qualifying rounds and who their key players are. Inevitably I only have a clue what shape Holland & the US are in because I support those teams-- Holland 1st, the US 2nd. My only allegiance to the US, as with so many at World Cup time, is that I was born in NYC. I agree that an exhibition match against the WNT would be a bigger draw. Allegiance replaces the familiarity that is key to marketing. But when you're building a brand / awareness, you gotta start somewhere-- in this case, preferably NOT in a place OVERLOADED and supercharged by an existing brand like the White Caps or TFC.

Edmonton is a clean slate. No struggle to rise above the din of other brands, other massive entertainment traditions and activities. Edmonton is the calm glassy surface of a pristine lake, instead of the choppy seas of Toronto or Vancouver's open water.

I say 25,000. For Christine... and Marta.

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I see where you are coming from but you research the World Cup because I assume you're a dedicated soccer fan (it would be pretty hard to stumble upon the Voyageurs if you weren't a dedicated soccer fan). You average Joe who may be interested in watching the Women's national team play won't go out and research two club teams to see if its worth going to. Womens National team games also do a really good job of getting out young girls teams. Would a club game do the same? Probably not. What's the incentive?

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I say 25,000. For Christine... and Marta.

Seeing Christine Sinclair and Marta pair up to demolish a team isn't incentive enough to find something interesting to do one summer evening? Canada's WNT int'l friendlies & training camps are usually outside the country. When next will anyone (Albertans in particular) get the chance to watch Sinclair play in their backyard... with Marta?

Men don't watch women's soccer. I get that. I was naieve to think Voyageurs would have any keen insight on possibilities. Y'all watch games on tv. Comment on strategy, skill level, roster selections, etc. Maybe it shouldn't surprise me that few Voyageurs have dreams for the WNT. That's ok. They'll thrive anyway. But we could all use a little help so... I dream on.

Lest I seem as someone with a mere passing interest in football (but a strange obsession with WPS) let me say that I've played as a striker alongside Heather Moyse @ University of Waterloo, been founding President of a minor soccer league, enjoyed media accreditation at a World Cup as a sports photographer and assisted scouting / winter training for a u14 Provincial Winter Training program. I commented on Voyageurs under the name "Catalyst" back in the day when Moya Lang (Kara's mom) commented anonymously. Heck, I even used to have Moderator permissions for CSA's online forum back before people got outta hand forcing it to be shut down.

A passing fancy-- hardly. But I'm not going to claim I know everything about all 32 teams each World Cup either.

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^ Woah. First off I never attacked you being a legit fan of the game in fact I think I said you probably are a big supporter of the game, and I can now see for sure that you are. But please don't say myself along with all the other men on this board don't care about the women's national team. I went to Toronto and back in a night last year to watch the women lose 4-0 to the USA. I've got a poster of Sinclair on my bedroom wall (flipping the bird to a Brazilian and signed by Christine herself, class act :D). I've covered the women's national team on my blog. I've been a supporter of the womens game in Canada for a good while now.

I agree with you to grow the game in Canada more WNT friendlies should be played in Canada, but I just don't see a club game drawing the huge crowd in Edmonton that you seem to believe it will. Marta and Sinclaire are big namse in women's soccer circles, and some general soccer circles around the world but not among 25,000 people in Edmonton. You have do draw on something else to get these people out, national pride being the main one. Sure a lot of people came out to see the women play in the U-19 World Cup back in 03 at Commenwealth, but for a one off club friendly between two teams from a two year old league? I don't think you'd get nearly that number.

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