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The WPS Debut Is.....

Insider sources on both coasts say the relaunch of a U.S. women's pro league will be Sun., March 29 with the Washington Freedom visiting the Los Angeles Sol at Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. Fox Soccer Channel is expected to provide live coverage.

Three matches will be played the following week with one of the seven teams receiving a bye. The Freedom's home opener at Maryland SoccerPlex will be Sat., April 11 against the Chicago Red Stars.

WPS, which signed Puma to a major sponsorship deal, is preparing to officially announce the early stages of the schedule this week.

MLS will begin its season March 19. The Freedom and D.C. United are tentatively planning three doubleheaders at RFK Stadium.

Might we see Brazilian superstar Marta (a Puma endorser) in the opener for the Sol against Abby Wambach and the Freedom?

By Steve Goff  |  December 15, 2008; 11:56 PM ET
Categories:  Women  
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Comments

Washington v Chicago. Hmmm... need fancy name to market the match. Both cities have red stars on their flags. The Red Star Cup? Classico de las estrellas rojas? The Malia Obama Challenge?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | December 16, 2008 1:25 AM | Report abuse

I hope I'll be able to catch the WPS opening game on a webstrema or their website.

Posted by: Ben7LA | December 16, 2008 3:20 AM | Report abuse

I'll be watching.

Posted by: sitruc | December 16, 2008 6:32 AM | Report abuse

Could WPS be restarting at one of the worst times in modern history to start a sports league? Arena Football just announced their league on hold for '09. Just read an article on Slate suggesting that the Big Three should abandon their sponsorship of NASCAR. I'll be surprised if the NHL doesn't suffer some contraction in the coming years, and if MLS doesn't at least sputter a bit.

Posted by: sawsuaa | December 16, 2008 8:53 AM | Report abuse

If you keep watching the Discovery Channel and buying gifts from their store, the WPS should be OK. It would be nice to see the Freedom wear a "Shark Week" 3rd jersey.

Did I just type "3rd jersey"? Hey! What's that leafy stuff in my coffee?

Posted by: I-270Exit1 | December 16, 2008 9:34 AM | Report abuse

I'm sure they'll only be able to afford one jersey.

Posted by: Reignking | December 16, 2008 9:48 AM | Report abuse

I think WPS is cheap enough to make it for a couple of years, especially with a few serious sponsors, and to not be dependent on gate revenue.

I think MLS is also cheap enough to operate that it will be ok for a few years, in fact I would like to see tickets get even cheaper, especially in SSSs where other revenue can make up the difference. I mean MLS already loses money, right? and it is a fairly small bit of any owner's portfolio. plus, let's not forget the $120 million in expansion buyins expected through 2011 (150 if you count Seattle this season) that alone buys 4-5 years for the league. a couple million more in transfer fees a season, well we may not see a large increase in the cap from the new CBA, but MLS should survive (and that alone will give the league more credibility)

yes, the NHL is in trouble again, but it costs a heck of a lot more to operate an NHL team. as a general rule, sports will follow the same process as everyone else. the rich (the NFL, Yankees, Red Sox) will get richer, the poor (NHL in the south, MLB in smaller markets, anyone not owned by a billionaire) get poorer, and the nouveau riche pretenders (NASCAR, NHL, PGA) who expanded past their means on easy credit, will collapse in on themselves.

Posted by: joshuaostevens | December 16, 2008 9:58 AM | Report abuse

OT -- A grave injustice has been perpetrated -- Mr. Goff did not repeat as best blog in the US Soccer voting. More Chicago politics at work?

Wambach v. marta . . . . is Wambach on schedule to be ready by March 29?

Posted by: OWNTF | December 16, 2008 10:20 AM | Report abuse

It would be nice to see the Freedom wear a "Shark Week" 3rd jersey.

Dude, you're a marketing genius.

Posted by: DadRyan | December 16, 2008 10:41 AM | Report abuse

I thought there was a WNBA team called Sol. Aren't there trademark issues?

Posted by: fedssocr | December 16, 2008 11:52 AM | Report abuse

I'm excited for the United/Freedom doubleheaders! Sounds like a 4th of July weekend kind of theme...

Posted by: JB252 | December 16, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Zzzzzz... I'm honestly surprised the headline wasn't followed with a "has been suspended indefinitely."

Right now is a horrible time to launch a new league. The only Women's Pro sports that have been successful are individual sport's like Tennis or Golf.

I'd see investing in AIG as a safer bet than WPS.

Posted by: alecw81 | December 16, 2008 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Alec, I don't think that the WPS is holding their breath that you are going to make like Daddy Warbucks and make it rain...

You and others are right about one thing. It is a very, very challenging time to launch.

Having said that, I am really looking forward to trying to add some Freeedom games into my already really busy schedule of supporting MLS, USL1 & USL2 clubs. If it is anything like the old WUSA Freedom experience, it should be a heck of a lot of fun.

Posted by: yankiboy | December 17, 2008 9:42 AM | Report abuse

I thought there was a WNBA team called Sol. Aren't there trademark issues?

Posted by: fedssocr | December 16, 2008 11:52 AM
-------------------------------------------
Since the Mystics play like scrubs, I don't follow them anymore (hey, like I said in the previous post my summer is busy with supporting 3 different soccer clubs).

But if I recall correctly, the Miami Sold got sold to a casino belonging to Indian Nation in CT and they are now callet the Conneticut Sun...

Posted by: yankiboy | December 17, 2008 9:50 AM | Report abuse

No, the Orlando WNBA team went to Connecticut. The Miami Sol simply folded. I assume there's then no name issue with the L.A. WPS team.

Posted by: evwill | December 17, 2008 12:39 PM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 
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