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Just Women’s Sports partners with Ata Football

JWS | Women's Sport Coverage

The Soccer Show, starring Haley Kopmeyer and David Copeland-Smith, debuts Wednesday, March 10 on YouTube

March 5, 2021 – Ata Football and Just Women’s Sports — two growing women’s sports platforms launched in 2020 — today announced a partnership to further enhance exposure and engagement for women’s soccer through exclusive premium content. 

Building upon the success of its Just Women’s Sports podcast, Just Women’s Sports will utilize premium content from Ata Football to produce The Soccer Show, a first-of-its-kind weekly highlights-driven show exclusively covering the FA Women’s Super League (FA WSL). Hosted by former professional soccer player Haley Kopmeyer and elite trainer David Copeland-Smith, each episode will provide in-depth coverage including news, highlights and analysis. The Soccer Show premieres on Wednesday, March 10, with the inaugural episode set to feature coverage of matches featuring top-ranked teams including Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United. New episodes post each Wednesday on the Just Women’s Sports YouTube page and the Ata Football platform

Just Women’s Sports is a new sports media platform 100% dedicated to covering women’s sports exclusively. Founded by former professional soccer player Haley Rosen, Just Women’s Sports provides news and analysis of women’s sports through exclusive interviews, podcasts, videos and other content. Best known for its flagship podcast, Just Women’s Sports with Kelley O’Hara, Just Women’s Sports has quickly grown a passionate audience of more than one million fans, followers and listeners. 

“At Just Women’s Sports, we’re dedicated to covering women’s sports with the passion, intensity and commitment to storytelling that professional athletes deserve,” said Rosen. “We’re thrilled to partner with Ata Football – a company that shares our mission to elevate women’s sports – and to show what we’re capable of producing when given access to exclusive premium content.”

Founded by former Sky executive Hannah Brown and former professional soccer player and coach Esmeralda Negron, Ata Football is the preeminent home for women’s soccer on the Web and is the exclusive rights holder for matches from the FA Women’s Super League. Live and on-demand matches are distributed in the U.S. with broadcast partner NBC Sports and are available on Atafootball.com.

“We’re focused on continuing to become the go-to destination for women’s soccer globally and the epicenter of a community that inspires the next generation of girls,” said Negron. “Our partnership with Just Women’s Sports to produce and distribute The Soccer Show is another great step on that journey.”

Kopmeyer is best known for her time as goalkeeper for Seattle Reign FC and the Orlando Pride of the NWSL. A University of Michigan graduate, Kopmeyer also played for the Brisbane Roar and the Canberra United of the W-League in Australia. Copeland-Smith is the founder of Beast Mode Soccer, and has trained some of the world’s best players, including Alex Morgan, Rachel Daly, Kristie Mewis and Allie Long.

The Soccer Show will be produced by Blue Duck Media, led by showrunner and sports industry veteran Ashley Braband, who most recently was the force behind the scenes and on the mic at ESPN’s Sports? with Katie Nolan. Over 13 years at ESPN, she produced TV shows like SportsNation and Colin’s New Football Show, and helped develop and launch various digital shows for ESPN’s social channels, before serving in her latest role as showrunner of Always Late with Katie Nolan.

Fans can sign up for updates on new episodes of The Soccer Show here

MEDIA CONTACT

Jeff Heckelman, 631-312-7327, [email protected] 

About Just Women’s Sports Inc.

Established in 2020, Just Women’s Sports Inc. is a digital-first consumer media brand 100% dedicated to covering women’s sports. Through daily content including podcasts, newsletters, online content and social media, Just Women’s Sports brings you everything you need to see and know in the world of women’s sports. Find Just Women’s Sports online and on YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter and Facebook

About Ata Football

Ata Football facilitates access to the very best women’s football for fans, broadcasters, sponsors, publishers and influencers. Our broad partnerships with premium distributors, combined with unparalleled grassroots and elite player engagement, accelerate engagement and drive value for everyone connected with the game. Everything we do helps to create a virtuous cycle of investment and improvement that enables women’s football to shine its brightest – now and for generations of young female footballers to come. For more information, visit www.atafootball.com.  

Caitlin Clark stuns in surprise SNL appearance

(Julia Hansen/Iowa City Press-Citizen / USA TODAY NETWORK)

Caitlin Clark made a surprise appearance on “Saturday Night Live” over the weekend, which quickly went viral.

The Iowa star showed up on the show’s Weekend Update segment to playfully call out Michael Che’s history of making jabs at women’s sports. It started when Che joked that Iowa should replace Clark’s retired No. 22 “with an apron.” 

When Clark entered, Che said that he was a fan. But Clark wasn’t convinced – especially not when co-host Colin Jost brought the receipts of Che’s jabs.

“Really, Michael? Because I heard that little apron joke you did,” she said, before making him read some jokes of her own in retaliation and shouting out the WNBA greats that came before her. She then got in one final dig – bringing him a signed apron as a souvenir. 

When Che promised to give it to his girlfriend, Clark delivered her best line of the night.

“You don’t have a girlfriend, Michael,” she said.

Afterward, SNL castmember Bowen Yang told People that the 22-year-old and teammates Gabbie Marshall, Kate Martin and Jada Gyamfi – who joined her at Studio 8H – “were so cool.”

“She's so charming and witty,” Yang said. “They were just the most stunning, noble people.

“Athletes just have this air about them. They know they're amazing. I mean, these are people who have numeric attachments and values to their performance. That's something that comedians never have.”

Portland Thorns start NWSL season winless, in uncharted territory

Portland has started the season winless through four games for the first time. (Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports)

The Portland Thorns continue to struggle to start the season, falling 2-0 to the North Carolina Courage and remaining winless through its first four games. 

It’s uncharted territory for Portland, who has never started the NWSL regular season without a win in four games before. Following the loss, defender Becky Sauerbrunn voiced her frustrations with the start. 

“It’s hard to find a lot of encouraging things, but what I find encouraging is that people are frustrated,” she said. “People are pissed off that we’re not doing well. We care, and I think that’s really important.” 


She also added that while the team will reflect individually, “there’s going to be no finger pointing.”

“We’re going to look at ourselves and figure out what we should have done, or I should have done better,” she said. “There is a list of things that I could have done better, and I’m going to make sure I know every single thing and watch this game back.”

The Thorns currently sit at the bottom of the league table with just one point, having allowed 10 goals – tied for the worst in the league. They’ve yet to lead in a match. And as questions grow, answers need to be had from head coach Mike Norris. 

Norris is in his second year as head coach of the club after leading the team to a second-place finish in the regular season last year. When asked about the possibility of pressure growing after the unprecedented start, Norris said that the pressure has been there “from day one.”

“I cannot be driven by my day-to-day and the longer vision of the pressure of the job,” he said. “We’ve got a belief in how we want to play, how we operate. We’ve got to stick with the process of that. While we do it, we have to review and see what is working, what’s not working.

“I’ll be showing up for the team and being there for what they need from me as we approach getting back together as a group next week.”

Maria Sanchez reportedly requests trade from Houston Dash

Mar 23, 2024; Houston, Texas, USA; Houston Dash forward Maria Sanchez (7) warms up before the match between Racing Louisville and Houston Dash at Shell Energy Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Maria Sanchez, who signed one of the biggest deals in NWSL history just four months ago, has reportedly requested a trade from the Houston Dash. 

ESPN was the first to report the news, which was confirmed by multiple sources.

In a statement to ESPN, the team said: “​​Maria Sanchez is under contract, a choice she made in free agency at the end of 2023." 

In December, Sanchez signed a new three-year contract with the Dash worth $1.5 million including bonuses and an option year. At the time, it was the largest contract in NWSL history – something that was eclipsed by multiple contracts in the following months. 

The winger was a restricted free agent in the offseason, meaning that Houston could match any offer from another team and retain her rights. Should the team trade Sanchez, her contract would remain as it has been signed with the league. That limits the number of teams that could take on her contract. 

In three starts with the Dash this season, Sanchez has zero goals and an assist. The Dash are 1-2-1 through four games and have allowed a league-worst 10 goals.

The team hired a new coach, Fran Alonso, in December. Earlier this year, former goalkeeper coach Matt Lampson was fired for violating the league’s Coach Code of Conduct and Anti-Fraternization policy. 

Both the NWSL trade window and transfer window close at midnight ET on Friday.

Canada beats U.S. Hockey 6-5 in thrilling World Championship win

UTICA, NEW YORK - APRIL 14: Team Canada raises the Championship Trophy after winning The Gold by defeating The United States in OT during the 2024 IIHF Women's World Championship Gold Medal game at Adirondack Bank Center on April 14, 2024 in Utica, New York. (Photo by Troy Parla/Getty Images)

Canada got its revenge on Sunday, winning the 2024 IIHF Women’s World Championship and taking down the U.S. in a 6-5 overtime classic.

Marie-Philip Poulin, a longtime star for Canada, got her first two goals of the tournament, while Danielle Serdachny had the game-winner. 

"I hate to say you're not trying to rely on it, expect it, but I know I've grown to expect it," Canada coach Troy Ryan said of Philip-Poulin. "Tonight was just a whole other level. I could see in her eyes every time we called her name that she was ready to go. It's just special."

The win came after Canada lost 1-0 to the U.S. in the group stage of the tournament. On Sunday, the two teams met for the 22nd time in 23 tournaments in the gold medal game – and the action between the two teams delivered. 

Among those scoring for the U.S. were Megan Keller, Alex Carpenter, Hilary Knight, Laila Edwards and Caroline Harvey. Julia Gosling, Emily Clark and Erin Ambrose had the other three goals for Canada, giving them their 13th World title after falling to the U.S. in last year’s title game in Toronto. 

This year’s game was held in New York, and it was the second-highest scoring final between the two teams. The U.S. won a world championship 7-5 in 2015. 

"Oh man, that feels good to win it on U.S. soil," Canada goalie Ann-Renee Desbiens said after the game. "We owed it to them and owed it to ourselves to win that one."

Canada also denied Knight a record 10th World Championship win, although she did become the most decorated player in women’s world championship history with 14 medals. After the game, Poulin gave Knight a hug on the ice. 

"We just said 'that was unbelievable,'" Poulin said.

U.S. coach John Wroblewski echoed the sentiment that it was an outstanding game after being asked about ending the game on a power-play after leaving too many players on the ice. 

"Instead of talking about the isolated events of tonight's game, I think that normally that's an interesting storyline,” he said. “But I think the entity of an amazing 6-5 game is an amazing hockey game that took place."

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