July 12, 2024

Boring women’s soccer?  – If you cut up the men and women, they suddenly play pretty well – news

Boring women’s soccer? – If you cut up the men and women, they suddenly play pretty well – news

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Surprising study: Men’s soccer is rated better only if the gender of the players is clearly identifiable.

Some viewers switch to lecture mode when women’s soccer is on TV. The expert explains at length from the couch why the ball spins differently for women. This is not meant as a compliment.

Study from the University of Zurich (UZH) Now comes a surprising realization: men’s art is clearly placed above women’s art if the gender of the players is also known. If players are cut, stereotypes blur.

Morgan or Modric – the main thing is football

In the experiment, 613 study participants watched goal scenes of top soccer players such as Alex Morgan from the USA and Luka Modric from Croatia.

In one group, the gender of the players was blurred so that the participants could not tell if they were seeing men or women. In the control group, the videos were not altered.

Participants watched five men’s and five women’s videos and rated the players’ performance on a 5-point scale. The result: female soccer players were suddenly able to keep up with the men.

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With the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, the spotlight is once again on the quality of women’s football. In this discourse, the study by the University of Zurich offers an entirely new perspective.

Keystone/AP/Alessandra Tarantino

Boring, slow, unattractive: For too long, women’s sports have struggled with public perception. According to the study, such sexist ideas are less widely accepted today than they were in the past. But they are still adamant.

women or men? Video of the French Shepherd Natty

Accordingly, women’s abilities in sports – as well as in male-dominated professions – continue to come under scrutiny. According to the study, lower media attention compared to men’s soccer fuels prejudices, as does disproportionately smaller economic investment.

Fight for the cup – and for recognition

“The conventional wisdom is that men’s sports are better than women’s sports because they are bigger, stronger and faster,” explains Carlos Gomez, a researcher at the University of Zurich’s Institute of Business Administration and an author of the study. “However, the presence of stereotypes should alert us to another possibility: information about gender can influence our perception of quality.”

Women’s football and expensive money


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At this World Cup, the prize money for women is higher than ever. FIFA distributes $ 110 million in bonuses. That’s at least $30,000 per player – four times more than it was at the last World Cup. “The men received a total of $440 million at last year’s FIFA World Cup in Qatar,” SRF Business Editor Pascal Lago puts it in perspective.

FIFA says it wants to continue to promote financial equality between men’s and women’s football. The same amount will be distributed by 2027. “FIFA is betting that women’s football will be more lucrative by then,” says Lago. However, the ratings for broadcast television are currently much lower than those for men – and correspondingly less money is spent on advertising and sponsorship.

“This is why television stations are not willing to dig deep into their pockets for broadcast rights,” concludes Lago. The live broadcast of the World Cup matches almost failed due to the reluctance of Germany, Italy and France to pay the required amount for the rights. According to informed sources, FIFA demanded about ten million euros for this. The fact that the Down Under games are part of the European morning program due to the time difference added to the suspicions. After all: in the end, the TV stations and FIFA agreed – and the games will be widely broadcast in Western Europe.

For Gomez, the result also disproves a widely held assumption: women’s soccer attracts less public interest because the quality is inferior to men’s soccer. “Down Under” not only football players are fighting for the world championship title, but also against many prejudices.

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