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NWSL protests and the Washington Spirit: Freedom Kicks for 7 October 2021

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Soccer, go!

NWSL: National Women’s Soccer League-Washington Spirit at NJ/NY Gotham FC Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

Good afternoon and welcome to a leaves changing, spooky season edition of Freedom Kicks. The soccer is coming 2 Fast 2 Furious right now, so let’s just get straight into the links:

Washington Spirit, NJ/NY Gotham FC come together to protest NWSL abuse, and play to 0-0 draw

The Washington Spirit played to a 0-0 draw last night against Gotham FC, a game played in Philadelphia so that Carli Lloyd could get a hometown sendoff in her last season. However, the game itself was the least important part of what happened of the field last night.

The players and the fans continued their protests against the mental and physical abuse of players in the NWSL, including a stoppage of play in the sixth minute and banners throughout the stadium.

The Portland Thorns made an announcement just after the game, suspending Gavin Wilkinson on leave from that team. However, it immediately became clear that that was not enough given that he is still currently in his other job.

Wilkinson needs to be suspended from both of his jobs in the Thorns/Timbers organization. Silencing a gay women in his role with the Thorns should be a suspendable and fireable offense for the Timbers as well. The reckoning is nowhere near done, and a lot of powerful and rich people need to be held accountable for the way that they have abused and exploited the players throughout the history of the NWSL.

We have to keep making everyone accountable, so keep raising your voices and making sure that the Washington Spirit, Steve Baldwin, Bill Lynch, and Larry Best know that what they’ve done so far is still not acceptable.

That’s all I have today. What’s up?