Manchester City have announced their determination to banish negative perceptions of women’s football.
A new ‘Same City, Same Passion’ campaign has seen City merge their men’s and women’s social media channels, saying the push is “focused on promoting women’s football by demonstrating that the same skills, same excitement and same passion exist wherever a ball is kicked”.
City’s women’s team were relaunched four years ago this week, going on to become Women’s Super League champions in 2016. Nick Cushing’s team, which includes the likes of England stars Steph Houghton, Jill Scott and Nikita Parris, also lead the way this season.
The club announced: “Despite the rapid growth the sport has experienced since then, the general public perception of women’s football does not always match the reality of what can be seen on the pitch.
“In 2014, FIFA’s women’s football survey found that only 13 per cent of its member associations believed women’s football was perceived as a quality sport.
“Same City, Same Passion has been created to combat this misconception and to show that the similarities to the men’s game are far greater than the differences, and that men’s, women’s, boys’ and girls’ football can be enjoyed by everyone.”
The club will stage a ‘Same City, Same Passion’ weekend when the men’s team play Leicester at the Etihad Stadium on February 10 and the women entertain Liverpool a day later.
The campaign launch comes in the week that England Women appointed former Manchester United defender Phil Neville as their new manager. United do not yet have a women’s team.
City operating officer Omar Berrada said: “Misconceptions about the professionalism and quality of women’s football still exist and that needs to change.
“Same City, Same Passion aims to highlight that the similarities between men’s and women’s football are far greater than the differences and, regardless of who’s playing, it’s just football.
“Merging social media channels as part of this campaign offers us a unique opportunity to increase the visibility of our women’s team and to offer our supporters the chance to enjoy the excitement and passion that defines every Manchester City team.”
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