Social media is such a hoot.

Take, for example, the confirmation of the growth of women’s football in the numbers that are emerging from the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand. If record attendances for games would firmly consolidate the theory that the women’s game is finding a place in the modern era, a quick glance at Twitter might suggest a Life on Mars contrast.

Hang onto your sides for this glorious little nugget as one women’s football Twitter meme did the usual social media rounds this week.
The giggles get going with the nice intro of “her husband passed her an important note” - cringe in itself - with a manager’s scribbled instructions on a piece of paper being passed around an on-field team before the big reveal showed…..a grocery shopping list.
Hahaha! So drole! Such wit! Such imagination!

It is such a tired, stale gag and - one of a thousand in the same vein - that it feels like chewing on the same piece of time immemorial gum so bereft of any humour is the clip. Yet, judging by its numbers it clearly appeals to a certain demographic.

Think Bernard Manning and mother-in-laws. 

So far, the Women’s World Cup has surpassed the 1.5 million target FIFA set out to realise in terms of ticket sales. 1.7 million tickets have been sold as the knockout stages kick off this week. 

Interest in these parts may have been compromised by the time differences which have taken European viewers away from peak times as games have kicked off early morning or lunchtime but nevertheless the global figures for sales and views are encouraging. 

It is depressing then to note some of the dinosaurial attitudes that remain prevalent. 

Let’s not get into the quick rebuttal of “it’s just a joke”. Given what passes and what has historically passed under the banner of humour, such a dismissal fails to grasp the bigger picture of what is at play. And, interestingly, it is difficult to find its comparison among any other group. Women, and women in sport are particularly triggering it would seem, tend to attract a misogyny that is far more vocal - and tacitly accepted - than any other.

‘Jokes’ with racist undertones that played on any other stereotypes would rightly and quickly be called out. Yet where is the criticism of this kind of content that is shared around and passed on via WhatsApp and Messenger? At best it might elicit a dry and tired roll of the eyes but why is it so readily accepted that women playing sport are fair game for this kind of nonsense? 

The advancements in technology that have taken place over the last two decades have been at a ferocious pace but as a society it is interesting to ponder whether our culture has kept stride with such shifts or whether it has simply given a platform to amplify the noise of the ignorant. 

Twenty odd years ago as a young reporter covering the weekly ritual of a pre-match press conference, it was difficult not to overhear a snide whispered aside from one well known football pundit when a female broadcast journalist was busy asking questions - (this is also known as doing her job). 

‘Who’s making her man’s tea, then?’ was met with the kind of nudge-nudge, wink-wink response that felt reminiscent of the Morecambe Bay ‘70s caravan park circuit. 

It wasn’t funny then and it fails to raise a smile now. 

Everyday sexism. As the name suggests, it’s never far away. 


In keeping with the theme of the day, motherhood and careers have long been uneasy bedfellows. Women in any work place will be able to tell stories of missed promotions and lost jobs, even careers that have been sacrificed because the juggling act was just too demanding.

Last year, Scotland manager Pedro Martinez Losa made headlines when it was revealed that he had implemented a progressive approach to the issue. Left-back Emma Mukandi returned to the national team nine months after giving birth with her baby daughter in tow with the Scotland camp offering babysitting services for the player while she trained. 

It is not always quite so easy. A number of players at this summer’s Women’s World Cup have left small children behind as they go and represent their country. Alex Morgan and Crystal Dunnin the USWNT have returned to elite level after childbirth while there are similar stories in the French, German and Jamaican squads. Cheyna Matthews, an American-born Jamaican striker, revealed in a pre-World Cup video that one of her three sons always asks why she has to be away for “too many days.”

“We just sacrifice a lot to do what we do,” she said, clearly emotional as she offered her thoughts on the matter. 

For young players emerging into the professional game now such matters will become increasingly prevalent.


Rangers took first blood last weekend in the Glasgow Cup after they came from behind to beat Fran Alonso’s side with two goals in the final two minutes.

There have been significant changes throughout the top trio ahead of a new season and it will be intriguing to see if the wave of interest that rolled around towards the end of the last campaign is sustained going into a fresh campaign.