Global Sports: Billie Jean King Campaigns for Women's Soccer


Billie Jean King says FIFA’s current scandal is an opportunity for women’s soccer.

Craig Barritt/Getty Images for Jefferson Award

BOSTON — Forty-three years after its creation, the Women’s Tennis Association still bills itself as “the global leader in women’s professional sport.”

This is no puffed-up claim. With close to $130 million in prize money available in 2016, tennis continues to provide paydays like no other women’s sport. See the $3.3 million that Flavia Pennetta earned for winning the 2015 United States Open. The sport has also produced a steady stream of truly global stars with staying power, from Chris Evert and Martina Navratilova in the W.T.A.’s early years to Maria Sharapova, who may not play much longer, and Serena Williams.

But it is just as clear that the W.T.A. is on borrowed time when it comes to global leadership. Women’s soccer, a still-drowsy giant, continues to stir.

Soccer is a team game with fewer barriers…

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