To play in M-League, should football clubs have women’s teams?

We live in modern times where a woman can win the heavyweight category of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), if that’s what she wants of course, which is extremely fabulous.

But despite the progressive views of today, there is still a significant group that believes there are certain things that a man (feels he) can exclusively do, which a woman cannot.

One of these is to score a goal from a penalty in football. We, men, think it’s in our DNA to do so and we continue to believe it even though all the evidence suggests otherwise.

I once took a penalty and, no kidding, the ball went straight to the extended hands of the keeper. Despite causing an awkward silence on the pitch and being told by a team mate that his grandmother could have kicked the ball harder, I still pretty much think I’m 80 per cent Zinedine Zidane.

In conjunction with International Women’s Day, I recently moderated a talk via Clubhouse entitled ‘For a FA of Malaysia / Malaysian Football League licence, women’s football should be made a prerequisite’.

I was joined by two seasoned female panellists from the football industry, who to the astonishment of many, did not agree to an immediate implementation of such suggestion.

This comes to me as no surprise. Similar circumstances are observed in the construction industry and also during my years in competitive university debating.

Women who are successful in what many see as a male-dominated domain would likely possess traits or characteristics that are male-oriented. In the context of university debating, most of the top five female debaters of any major debating competition would most likely retain a ‘male voice’ – which is generally referred to as a communication orientation or style that is more assertive and less responsive.

What this construct explains is that for a woman to be accepted and have her ideas susceptible, and for her to succeed in a supposedly male-dominant domain, she would have to speak, behave, and operate like men.

The primary argument against immediate enforcement to assert women’s football within clubs seeking a competitive licence is that firstly they don’t have money, and secondly, poor administration will spill over to the women’s team.

State football clubs in Malaysia are awash with sinful amounts of money.

Despite our constant inability to qualify for the Asian Football Confederation Cup, our players are among the highest paid professional footballers in this region.

Money is definitely not the issue. The real issue is the management of money.

Despite having all that ridiculous money, it comes as a big surprise that Malaysia is also one of the countries in the region with the highest instances of unpaid salaries.

And because women’s football is regarded as an ‘accessory’, I lean to agree that the probability of ill-treatment on the women’s team is a lot likely to happen.

But just because the club is run by a group of daft administrators, it does not mean that women’s football should continue to be out of the equation.

Equal and comprehensive supervision and enforcement should simply be extended, sweeping all categories of professional football – senior, youth, futsal and the women’s teams.

Naturally, the new requirement of having a women’s team to earn a competition licence will enrage the clubs.

This is because in the heads of those running our football clubs, if there is no women’s football in the country, it wouldn’t really matter.

This is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of Twentytwo13.

Tagged with: