World Cups, Super Leagues and pay disputes: 10 key moments in women's football history

USA Women, 2019 World Cup winners, Megan Rapinoe
(Image credit: Getty Images)

There was a time when women’s football was not viewed as hugely different to men’s football in the UK. In the aftermath of WWI, as women took to the factory floors to supplement the war effort while the men were fighting, women began to organise and participate in the sport in large numbers and the crowds duly flocked. Then shortly after Lancashire-based side Dick Kerr’s Ladies drew a crowd of 53,000 spectators in 1921, the Football Association banned women’s football for 50 years. 

Even when the ban was relinquished in 1971, the FA didn’t exactly help the sport to thrive, it was left to its own devices until 1993 when the FA opted to take over the administration. Meanwhile in the US, the passing of the Title IX legislation in 1972 guaranteed equal access to soccer for boys and girls – the USWNT has since won four World Cups and four Olympic golds. Events such as these are just part of the rich game that is women’s football, a sport where the players have faced – and overcome – discrimination, apathy and spite. Read on to learn more about the key moments in the sport. 

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