Reading this FiveThirtyEight article on the advancement (or lack thereof) of the women’s game (written prior to last night’s US-Thailand match), this caught my eye:
For Thailand, South Africa or Argentina, a win in the group stage — or even a goal or two — can help raise the profile of women’s soccer back home.
People rightly celebrated Argentina getting their first-ever World Cup point from their 0-0 draw with Japan. Hopefully that does raise the profile of the Argentine side back home.
But it also occurs to me that Thailand getting absolutely, completely, record-breakingly demolished by the US could serve to raise their profile, too, if in a different way. I don’t mean to claim the US purposefully hammered them for this reason; it’s certainly a silver-lining point of view. But just imagine what the heads of the Thai football association must be saying to each other today. Or even the heads of FIFA itself, as they prop up their feet on stacks of money and sip cocktails garnished with hundred-euro notes.
Maybe it’s something like: Ouch. What can we do to help keep that from happening again?