BALTIMORE, MD (January 17, 2008) -- The new women’s soccer league in the United States will be called Women’s Professional Soccer, the league announced today. The seven-team league, which will start play in 2009, also unveiled its logo and website, womensprosoccer.com.
“The league and team owners reviewed countless variations of league names and logos …before ultimately deciding on a brand identity that we strongly believe will resonate with fans for years to come,” said WPS commissioner Tonya Antonucci in a statement.
The navy, red and gold logo features the silhouette of retired Women’s National Team striker Mia Hamm, who declared herself “extremely honored and humbled to personify the WPS brand.” She said the league “will be revered by generations of soccer fans around the world.”
The President of the league’s Chicago franchise, Peter Wilt, said in the statement that WPS would be “the premier women’s soccer league in the world, and the global standard by which women’s professional sports are measured.”
Speaking here at the NSCAA convention, Wilt told USSoccerPlayers that WPS would succeed where the Women’s United Soccer Association failed because it will follow “a different business model. There’s a more conservative budget, and the league overheads are being reduced considerably.”
WPS would also be taking advantage of what Wilt called “synergies” with Major League Soccer, Soccer United Marketing and MLS teams such as Chicago, LA, DC, and possibly Dallas, in areas such as stadium-sharing. On top of that, “teams are integrating themselves much more in their local soccer communities” through partnerships with youth teams and local leagues.
Wilt also said that another problem with WUSA was that “the owners were disengaged. “[Washington Freedom owner] John Hendricks was easily the most engaged owner [in WUSA], and he still is very engaged,” said Wilt, “but this time the league has owners who are even more engaged.”
WPS will operate teams in Chicago, Boston, Washington DC, Dallas, Los Angeles, New Jersey/New York, and St. Louis. The Boston Breakers and the Washington Freedom have, according to a league source, paid for the right to retain their WUSA names, which had been owned by the US Women’s Players’ Association.
The only other team with a name so far is NY/NJ Sky Blue Soccer, with the other four teams still to be christened. A league spokesperson said in some cases the names may be put to a fan vote.