My son and daughter both played soccer when they were very young. The first experiences were "just for fun" park district skills and games. Later, as their skills and interest level grew, they participated in a still, "everybody plays" league, but one more focused on skill development. Their experiences with the game were my first. I knew nothing of soccer during my youth.
Michael played with the "everybody plays" league until around sixth grade. He wasn't interested in the more competitive league, deciding instead to move toward basketball. Danielle moved to the more competitive league. The traveling "club" played other "clubs" statewide. In addition to playing with the traveling club, she played for her high school, having earned a spot on the varsity squad as a freshman. For a few years her life revolved around soccer. For a few years my life revolved around soccer. I learned the game and along with Danielle grew to love the game. Especially, the women's game.
We get tickets to see the Women's National Team whenever they roll through town. We were bummed when Chicago didn't field a WUSA team. Even more bummed when the WUSA folded it's tent. We were overjoyed at the announcement of creation of the WPS (Women's Professional Soccer) . We were gleeful of the news that Chicago would field a team and that team would play in the nearly brand new soccer specific stadium where the men's MLS play. Whooooopeeee!!!
This year is the inaugural year. Sunday was the inaugural game. We were there. And don't let the pout fool you, though it rained all day, all during the game, she had a blast. In fact,
we had a blast. The Chicago Red Stars and Sky Blue FC played to a 0 - 0 tie in the first WPS game played in Chicago (well, Bridgeview).