• Sun. Sep 26th, 2021

Press-strike column: the place for women on the pitch


Jun 8, 2021

ARD’s "Sportschau" could fill the voids in its broadcast with women’s Bundesliga soccer. Why doesn’t it?

Big jumps: Freiburg player Kim Fellhauer Photo: dpa

If I want to know how Turbine Potsdam played, I have to Google. Sometimes there’s also a stream if it’s the top match of the day. If you’re interested in SC Sand, you have to Google even more. That this would move me once, I never expected and came by chance. In our girls’ soccer team, no one was interested in the women’s Bundesliga. We preferred to watch "Sportschau. Would it have been different if women’s soccer had been on "Sportschau"?

Ah yes, the good old "Sportschau". The balance after this Saturday was, as so often, a bit sobering. No North derby (because it’s at 6 p.m.), no debut for Sagnol (because it’s on Sunday), and no Hoffenheim or Leipzig games, because good teams generally don’t play when "Sportschau" is on. But at least this saves you from having to watch dreadful games like the last North derby. The "Sportschau" is like a cauliflower of which only the stalk is left. That’s not likely to change for a while. But they could make something good out of it.

The "Sportschau," after all, now has plenty of space for the Second League, including the Third. The mutilated Bundesliga puts SC Paderborn or Fortuna Koln back on the map, and we now also watch summaries of Holstein Kiel. But why does the women’s Bundesliga have no place in this decluttered "Sportschau"? Not a single game? They show summaries of the men’s Third League, but not Turbine against Wolfsburg. That has to change.

Of course, there is the argument of lack of demand. But will demand arise if there is no visible supply? Probably not. An entire premier league takes place off the radar. How stupid are we to afford that? Even a top match of the Women’s Bundesliga on "Sportschau" would bring something. The reach would be enormous. The fact that the Women’s Bundesliga plays on Sundays for good reason – the occasional Saturday games are about half as well attended because of the men’s competition – is not an insurmountable obstacle.

A select top match could be on Friday evening or Saturday lunchtime. Or on the "Sportschau" on Sunday. The fact that there is so little publicity is also the fault of the clubs. The portal Womensoccer recently complained that it had received post-match reports from just one third of the clubs. It takes effort to get on the radar. Do we really want to continue to feed the next generation unilaterally?

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