Support Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) Remaining a Sanctioned League
  • Petitioned US Soccer for Women's Professional Soccer

This petition was delivered to:

Dan Flynn, CEO/Secretary General
US Soccer for Women's Professional Soccer

Support Women's Professional Soccer (WPS) Remaining a Sanctioned League

    1. Petition by

      Alexandra Sahlen

      Buffalo, NY

December 2011


Gooooooaaaaaaallllllll! When the U.S. Soccer Federation announced on November 20 that Women's Professional Soccer (WPS), the national league where World Cup stars like Hope Solo and Abby Wambach train up to rock it on the international field, risked losing sanctioning if it couldn't add a sixth team in two weeks, prospects looked dim. But a game-saving goal come in the form of outcry from players and fans determined to save WPS -- 50,000 of them.

Alex Sahlen, a player for the WPS Team the Western New York Flash, started a petition on asking U.S. Soccer to grant her beloved league a one-year waiver from the minimum team requirement. In mid-December, U.S. Soccer announced that it will allow WPS to continue to develop and expand over the next year, recognizing that a sport with such devoted fans has an opportunity to thrive.

"I would like to thank all of the fans for their unwavering support throughout this difficult time and persisting with us to reach our ultimate goal of a 2012 WPS season," said Alex Sahlen after hearing the good cheer about WPS. "The support has been amazing and really touching and humbling for many of us. We are looking forward to another successful WPS season and will look to build upon this season to keep women's professional soccer around for many years to come."


Women's Professional Soccer faces a serious threat to its existence in the United States due to the latest decision by US Soccer which is requiring the league to have six teams in the next 14 days for the 2012 season. The league currently has 5 teams and is in danger of losing its sanctioning from US Soccer despite the fact that the league already has strong indications of expansion for the 2013 season.

Like any league, WPS has certainly had its growing pains but is looking ahead to a bright future. The league had a great 2011 season with many positives as several WPS Clubs broke attendance records. Women's Soccer has gained unbelievable awareness and interest all across America after the success of the US National Team at the World Cup and the high level of play throughout the WPS. Every player on the 2011 World Cup Roster has played in the WPS and benefited from the day in day out training and weekly competitive games in what has been up until now, the best women's soccer league in the world. Some players would have never been in the National Team frame if it weren't for the WPS. The WPS brought them the exposure and the platform that they needed to push to the forefront and represent their country at the biggest stage in world soccer. Without the support and Division 1 sanctioning of the league, the league will not be able to uphold and retain its Top domestic and National Team players as well as International Stars.

And what does this mean for your daughter? Or for your little sister? Your cousin? Your friend? WUSA has folded and we have recovered. But to see Women's Professional Soccer fail twice would surely mean the end. The opportunity for the millions of young girls that dream of being the next Hope Solo or Alex Morgan will never get the chance. All because US Soccer did not back the league that is playing in their back yard. That is producing and bettering their players for not just today, but for the future. The league and owners cannot be forced with their backs up against the wall to bring someone into the league who is not the right fit. This has become very clear. These 5 owners are committed and have fought tooth and nail, putting in millions of dollars to see the league succeed. The players have sacrificed their whole lives to become a professional athlete and live out their dream-the dream that could be crushed in just a matter of days. Growing a new league takes time and patience, especially a women's professional league. Time and Patience to grow the fan base and build each market. Time and Patience to tweak business models, and find their niche in their respective markets. Rome wasn't built in a day; neither will the WPS be. The WPS needs full support and backing from US Soccer to make this go.

The league would simply need an exemption from US Soccer for one year of the 6 Team Requirement. Please help us, and sign this petition to put pressure onto US Soccer to support their OWN players in their OWN country for the development of Women's Soccer not just for today, but for tomorrow and years to come.

Recent signatures


    1. Victory! Women's Professional Soccer Survives With Help From 50,000 Fans

      Alex DiBranco
      Petition Organizer

      Gooooooaaaaaaallllllll! When the U.S. Soccer Federation announced on November 20 that Women's Professional Soccer (WPS), the national league where World Cup stars like Hope Solo and Abby Wambach train up to rock it on the international field, risked...

    2. WPS has been sanctioned

      Alexandra Sahlen
      Petition Organizer

      Hi all, as I am sure many of you have heard but the league has been sanctioned by US Soccer. Thank you all for your unwavering support of the league and millions of future soccer players all over the US. We cannot thank you enough and we look forward to seeing you at WPS games in all of the markets in 2012!!

    3. Reached 40,000 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Carla Martinez PITTSBURGH, PA
      • almost 3 years ago

      Women's soccer is one of the most riveting games with a feminine twist. They are as good as the mens side, with just as much support.

    • Patricia Soha JAMAICA PLAIN, MA
      • almost 3 years ago

      I joined a soccer league at age 50 and it was awesome. Women of all ages need the example of these athletes! Women's sports are underfunded and underreported in the US.

    • Ashleigh Bagshaw COUNCIL BLUFFS, IA
      • almost 3 years ago

      I'm working really, REALLY hard to make it to a pro team in soccer and this would kill a lot of hopes of mine!

    • Kandace Wallace GREENUP, KY
      • almost 3 years ago

      Playing Professional is a dream for my daughter...I dont want that to be taken away! I want it to be possible!

    • m peet WILMINGTON, DE
      • almost 3 years ago

      I have 3 boys who have soccer role models to strive for. My 4 neices might have no such luck. Keep this league alive; albeit in a more financially sound manner.


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