Monday, October 05, 2009

A League of Their Own

Wouldn't you love the job of marketing the Brisbane Roar women? Talk about assets.

They cleaned up the W-League in its first season, winning both the Premiership and the Championship last year.

Actually last year they lost just one game, to Canberra at home. They drew just one game as well, to Canberra away. Canberra was their only nemesis.

To be fair they also drew against Sydney in the semis at Ballymore, winning the penalty shoot-out 5:4.

But then they played Canberra again, finally beating them in the grand final (also at Ballymore), and doing so in resounding 3:0 style.

The Grand Final was one of the mosty enjoyable games of soccer I've ever attended. There was a great crowd (of a couple thousand I guess), a fresh, carnival atmosphere with minimal Orwellian trimmings, and attractive football. If there is one word to describe the difference in atmosphere between the W-League games I've been to and the A-League games, it's joy. It's just fun.

Last Saturday was the first game of the new W-League, also at Ballymore, with the Roar playing, you guessed it, Canberra, the only team to have ever beaten them. A 3:0 win, repeating the Grand Final score, declared that nothing's changed. The Roar Women are the team to beat.

For game one, the crowd of over 1000 was pretty good, and I can see nothing in the way of it getting bigger. Everyone enjoys the experience (especially when Brisbane wins, which it has a wonderful habit of doing), and it costs them... wait for this... Five Bucks.

Fuck the transport issue. Get a couple of mates and catch a cab.

Did I mention that the girls are young, gorgeous and athletic? Of course I didn't, I'm far too correct for that.

What must be mentioned is that the football, whilst, same as the A-League, is not Champions League standard, it is, also like the A-League, good enough to be entertaining and fun. In my honest opinion it is less cynical. Last Saturday the Brisbane girls never stopped attacking after scoring the first goal, nor after the second, and after the third all they wanted was a fourth. The football was tough, spirited and pleasing on the eye, played by inspired, gifted and highly trained athletes.

Meanwhile, the ABC is playing a W-League game every week and giving it good coverage.

Anyway, wouldn't you love the job of marketing this? Is there anything stopping the crowds from growing?

So, um, why can't they even update the table now three full days after the game? Maybe Wikipedia is a better source for info than the official page. It's also where I learned (yes, I confirmed this) that Sasha McDonnell has moved from Canberra and has signed with the Roar (she didn't play on Saturday). The official site still has last year's team profile.

Who is marketing this? Is anyone?

Is someone afraid that W-League crowds, at Ballymore, could in a month or two rival A-League crowds at Suncorp?

The next Brisbane Roar women's game at home is against the Central Coast Mariners at 6pm, Sunday 18th October, Ballymore Stadium.

This Saturday at 5pm (proper time) they play Melbourne away (Epping Soccer Stadium), but I'm assuming the ABC will be playing the Perth vs Newcastle game (at 3pm). If any Melbourne bloggers go, I'd love to hear about it.

One critical note: they need food at Ballymore. Not just crisps and softdrink. At least some greasy crap.



Blogger Mike Salter said...

Watched some of the game on the ABC, and enjoyed it very much.

If you don't mind the vastly slower pace, women's football can often be good to watch.

October 05, 2009 11:33 pm  
Blogger Hamish said...

The pace is slower for sure Mike, though 'vastly' may be too strong a word.

But mate, it's $5. If you want top quality... well you fill in the gap for yourself. But I enjoy watching kids play, and the W-League is vastly better than that, using the adverb correctly I think.

October 05, 2009 11:52 pm  
Anonymous Dawn Albinger said...

I am a soccer newby: Celtics v Roar was my first live (professional) game; Roar v Sydney FC was my second; and the W-League (Brisbane Roar v Canberra) my third. The first and third experiences were the most engaging for all sorts of reasons, but if I continue to engage I suspect it will be because I had such a good time at the W-League on Saturday. I loved watching the women play - for my money (and yes $5 is a very attractive ticket price) the football was just as exciting as watching the boys play. I liked the venue (Ballymore) and the supportive and relaxed crowd. And I particularly enjoyed watching the girls in the crowd engaging in ardent heroine-worship! As far as role models go they could do much worse than the strong and skilled sportswomen on the field.
Thanks Hamish, for the introduction, and I think you should probably put your hat in the ring for the marketing position!

October 06, 2009 6:36 pm  
Anonymous geoff said...

great blog Hamish. Don't be too critical of the food situation: that game was the first time we've been able to buy beer at the game.

Dawn - are you the you I think you are? if you are, we share a link to the Toothfaeries. if so, hello again! I'll look out for you in the crowd next time.

October 07, 2009 6:44 pm  
Anonymous Fatty said...

I have been to every w-league match the roar women have played in and i have to say that if i was not involved with womens football or such a football fanatic i would not really know much about it. There's never as many match reports, pictures, videos or interviews on the team website as the men and i honestly
believe that there are people who are seriously interested about the women's team.

I do my bit to support the team and womans football by advertising games, news, reports and heaps of photos and videos on the Brisbane Roar W-League Facebook group (PLEASE JOIN)

There is clearly a support base with nearly 500 fans that have joined the group. I hope that more coverage and marketing is done for the team and the W-League, as the girls deserve it.


October 08, 2009 8:30 pm  
Blogger dawn said...

Yep, Geoff, I am that Dawn. and thanks Fatty, I'll join the fb fanclub

October 09, 2009 8:19 am  

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