Diversity, talent on the rise in US women’s soccer – Los Angeles Times

Growing up in a bedroom community across the East River from Manhattan, Crystal Dunn was often the only African American on her school and club soccer teams.

Casey Short, who was raised two years and 800 miles away in suburban Chicago, had the same experience. So did Lynn Williams, who is from Fresno, where she both played soccer and watched it on television.

“Growing you, you didn’t really see a lot of women of color on TV,” said Williams, who analyzed the evidence and concluded early she didn’t have a future in the sport. “As a little girl you look at the TV screen and you usually go towards things [where] you see people that look like you.”

Little girls watching women’s soccer on TV today are likely to have a completely different experience.  In the last couple of years African American participation in the sport has gone from isolated to indispensable, and that’s bringing positive change to a game that has long lacked diversity.

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