I always take notice when players speak of the massive impact the iconic 1999 US Women’s National Team had in their lives as professional athletes. Even if you haven’t watched a women’s game, you know the image of Brandi Chastain ripping her shirt off after making the game-winning penalty shot.
Visibility is EVERYTHING. Televising games, promoting teams within cities, and covering them in local and national media is essential to the growth of fan bases and the development of future players. We can’t support what we can’t see (believe me – as someone who follows international women’s soccer, it often takes nothing less than a degree in computer science or top-grade hacking skills to view games).