Abby Wambach appeals against artificial turf at 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup

High profile professional women’s football players such as USWNT’s Abby Wambach have been very vocal about their disapproval of playing the biggest women’s football tournament in the world on artificial pitches.

Abby Wambach commented after the initial announcement: “We believe this is a shame not only for the players but for the fans. The game plays differently on artificial surface, not only because of fear of injury but because it’s a different surface. You can also talk about it being a gender discrimination issue. Would they ever let the men’s World Cup be played on an artificial surface?”

The appeal against this decision continues with a group of top international football players having retained legal counsel in the fight to have the playing surfaces of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup changed from artificial turf to natural grass, reports Equalizer Soccer.

Abby Wambach and Nadine Angerer both of whom have won the FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year award are reportedly leading a group of approximately 40 national team players from around the world.

Never before has a FIFA World Cup tournament (male or female) been played on artificial turf, yet the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Canada could see as many as five of the six host venues feature an artificial playing field.

One of the arguments against playing on the artificial surface is that the use of an “inferior” surface for the Women’s World Cup “is discriminatory and violates Canadian law.” The Equalizer have obtained the letter, which was delivered to FIFA and Canada Soccer.

There has been no reported response/comment since the letter was delivered although Canada Soccer is reported to have confirmed it received the letter.

The FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup 2014 kicks off today in Canada, with some of the same host venues that will be used in next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup.

FIFA President Sepp Blatter commented during a press conference in Toronto for the FIFA U-20 Women’s World Cup: “There was a time that playing on so-called artificial turf, grass – it was a nightmare. It was a nightmare because there was not the quality; it was just a carpet put on concrete, as they played at a certain time in the North American Soccer League in the ‘80’s. But now the quality of the turf, or the artificial grass, has improved very much, and it is definitely – it is the future.”

It is well known about injuries suffered on artificial pitches and how it can have an impact on your game, has the quality of the artificial grass improved enough to eliminate this completely?

 

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