The NWSL season opens the curtain this weekend with outstanding novelties and a new team, the mediatic Angel City, founded by stars such as actress Natalie Portman, businessman and husband of Serena Williams, Alexis Ohanian, and businesswoman, julie uhrmanplus a group of investors with familiar faces like Eva Longoria, Jennifer Garner, Sophia Bush, Jessica Chastain, America Ferrera and Christina Aguilera, as well as athletes Mia Hamm, Abby Wambach, Candace Parker, among many others.
The new team was created with the aim of revolutionizing soccer in a country where Rapinoe, Alex Morgan or Christen Press They are already established stars and the competition breaks audience records every year.
The league starts this Friday precisely with the debut this Saturday of the Angel City against North Carolina Courage in a duel of maximum expectation: “Angel City is not just any football team… Sport is a very happy way of uniting people and also has the power to make change tangible for athletes both in our community and in the professional sphere,” actress Natalie Portman wrote when the team was announced in June 2020.
The fight against machismo and the search for equality has been at the roots of this team that wants to mark a new era from the beginning. “All of our decisions are based on values,” emphasizes the director, Jess Smith, with extensive experience in the NHL (Columbus Blue Jackets), MLB (Oakland Athletics) and MLS (San Jose Earthquakes). They have also been steadfast in their commitment to the LGBTQ community, racial minorities, and people with disabilities.
The team champions the fight for equality, diversity and support for minorities
“With each brand and person we work with, there is a reason behind it,” he explained. Smith. For example, DoorDash has committed to Angel City to provide one million meals to Angelenos in need while Sprouts has a school community garden program underway.
So far, the impact has been brutal and the new team has already sold 15,000 season tickets for its first season in the NWSL. It should be noted that the Banc of California stadium where their matches will be played has a capacity for 22,000 people.
The uniqueness of Angel City With a large majority of women in the management area and in the offices, it is one of the great attractions of this bloc that, beyond its claims, is simultaneously seeking a place in the elite and titles in its showcases. Thus, he has incorporated the world champion striker, Christen Press, as the biggest star, as well as the former English player Freya Coombe as technical director.
The team has six international players: VAnessa Gilles (Canada), Captain Ali Riley (New Zealand), Didi Haracic (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Allyson Swaby (Jamaica), Clarisse Le Biham (France) and Brazilian Stefany Ferrer Van Ginkel, Former player of Tigres of Liga MX Femenil. The hobby seeks to convey an atmosphere of inclusion and diversity. Among their songs, you can hear lyrics in Spanish that allude to the Latino community, very present in Los Angeles neighborhoods.
The League presents other novelties. For the first time since 2014, the NWSL regular season will feature the classic format where teams will meet twice, once at home and once on the road. The playoffs will be played among the first six of the general table, with the first and second places classified directly to the semifinals, while the third, fourth, fifth and sixth places will have to be measured in search of a pass to the semifinals that will culminate with the end on October 28.
With the arrivals of Angel City and San Diegois expected to be one of the best editions of the league that celebrates its 10th anniversary after being created in 2012. On Sunday, the games of Portland Thorns-Kansas City, Chicago Red Stars-Racing Louisville and Spirit-Olympique Reign come into action , and on Monday the Orlando Pride-Gotham FC and Houston Dash-San Diego Wave are played, with a total of twelve teams in competition.