This Women’s Super League argument in England is a little confusing:
- Nottingham Forest, which was relegated from the English pyramid’s second tier to the third last season, applied to be in the league in 2014 but was rejected.
- Notts County, Forest’s local rival, bid for a spot and was accepted.
- But the Notts County chairman is actually relocating an existing Super League team, Lincoln Ladies, to play at Notts County.
Nottingham Forest isn’t happy that a team from outside Nottinghamshire is moving into its space. And Lincoln Ladies fans are annoyed that the pride of Lincolnshire is moving away.
It’s not just a question of distance. The mileage between Notts County’s ground and Lincoln Ladies’ current home is 35.3 miles. The shortest drive from RFK Stadium (Washington Freedom 2001-03) to the Maryland SoccerPlex (Washington Freedom 2004-10, D.C. United Women 2011-12, Washington Spirit 2013-) is 40.1 miles.
But it’s also just 34.6 miles from RFK Stadium to Baltimore’s M&T Bank Stadium. Ask United or Spirit fans how they’d feel about that.
So it’s not just about driving distance. It’s about identity. And it’s stunning to see the English powers-that-be signing off on a move that ruins two identities at one swoop.