Russian women’s football eyes World Cup raise

Sports Desk, Arfin Shobuz, Staff Reporter, Dhaka Office: Russian women’s football eyes World Cup raise, AFP, MOSCOW: The sniggering youngsters stored pointing and gazing Margarita Chernomyrdina whilst she become small because she played soccer with the men.

She became the primary woman brave enough to try to make the junior league. Now rapt crowds watch the 22-yr-antique lead the women’s national team in its quest to win reputation and respect in Vladimir Putin’s socially conservative Russia.

The technically-proficient midfielder with the company gaze and tender smile knows the guys’s World Cup kicking off in Moscow in a month could work miracles for the Russian ladies’s sport.

“I think I gave women’s football a positive push,” Chernomyrdina says after a lively exercise along with her domestic facet Chertanovo.

“Girls saw that they might play soccer, that it became allowed, that not anything become banned, and that dad and mom need to now not be afraid,” she says.

“Of direction I assume the World Cup will only help.”

Chernomyrdina has spent her lifestyles breaking taboos set inside the Soviet generation and cemented by way of current Russia’s inflexible — some could say regressive — view of women’s function in the world.

The Communist Party disregarded its said equality purpose and banned girls’s football outright in 1972 as it became a “men’s sport”.

A quick revival in former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev’s liberal perestroika era stalled underneath the load of catastrophic economic woes.

And Putin’s Russia has had a tough time embracing the progress made by way of women in different parts of the arena a few generations ago.

Many aspiring lady footballers nonetheless have to brace themselves towards cultural stereotypes if they need to play their selected game.

That is why 17-yr-vintage Olga Belousova giggles shyly and appears away when discussing how others react to her devotion to the stunning sport.

“Some of my friends say it is completely everyday and others say no, this isn’t female,” the countrywide junior group ordinary says.

“I inform human beings that I adore it, that I don’t care what the others say.

The most essential issue is that I adore it and that is mine.”
Sports historians have spun various theories about why ladies failed to make an impact on Russian pitches whilst the game blossomed in places including Germany and america.

One popular legend says that high-quality goalkeepers which includes Lev Yashin and Rinat Dasayev have been related in Soviet folklore with defenders of the previous superpower’s sovereignty.

This confluence of masculinity and patriotism made football into a tool of political propaganda and left no room for ladies in the game.

Former countrywide crew coach Sergei Lavrentyev has little time for such talk as he leads Chertanovo’s afternoon training consultation

“In some respects, I suppose it’s miles more thrilling than guys’s football,” he says after shouting out encouragement and instructions in a gruff but amiable fashion.

“It is extra emotional, greater charged up. The women, they put on their hearts on their sleeves. I think the women are even tougher.”

The Russian crew are making a few strides.

They have reached three consecutive European Championships and beat especially fancied Italy for the primary time closing year.

Chernomyrdina hopes to avenge a 6-0 beating by way of England in a 2019 World Cup qualifier final yr whilst the groups meet in Russia’s subsequent fit on June eight. But the professional Russian league has shrunk from 15 teams in 1992 to just eight.

Average club in shape attendance is two hundred.

Chertanovo are complete of national group talent however still play in a stadium with one stand that could seat one hundred or so.

Coach Lavrentyev says the main obstacle to growth is simple: society’s apprehension about letting ladies kick a ball manner they have got nearly no academies wherein to train.

“That is why a massive occasion just like the World Cup will help. Millions will see it and there might be a big float of youngsters to soccer schools,” says Lavrentyev.


Sports Desk,