When families chat about the FIFA Women’s World Cup, parents should make a conscious decision to depart from the negative messaging by mainstream media. Instead of focusing on the storyline of defeat, emphasize the newfound adoration for the US Women’s Soccer Team and the inspiring achievements of Japan.
- US: The efforts of the US Women’s Soccer Team created an unprecedented market for men to purchase female sports jerseys, trended to the most popular topic per second in Twitter’s history and resulted in the highest watched soccer game for the world’s most respected sports network. The members of the US Women’s Soccer Team did not merely climb through the glass ceiling for female athletes – they shattered it.
- Japan: Japan’s team endured unparalleled emotional obstacles during its preparation for the World Cup, upset host country and two-time defending champion Germany in the quarterfinals and overcame deficits in regulation and overtime to beat a US team it had lost to in every one of their 25 previous matches. Japan’s fortitude in the face of defeat will forever be a symbol of strength in the hearts of millions from their home country yearning for a headline of hope.
We can’t teach the next generation to be afraid to fail, but by joining pundits in defining the championship as a “choke,” we do just that. So to parents of Generation Z, use your head (and think Abby Wambach) when discussing the FIFA Women’s World Cup Final.