- The 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup kicked off in Auckland, New Zealand, on Thursday
- The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar has been controversial due to allegations of human rights abuses by the host country
- The event is starting to be plagued with problems, including shootings, allegations of past FIFA policy, and a perceived cultural insult
The 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup kicked off on Thursday and there is already controversy.
The global event, which will take place in Australia and New Zealand, will continue for the next month and is due to conclude with the final match at Sydney’s Olympic Stadium on August 20.
After last year’s controversy with the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, the world football association needs a drama-free tournament to restore its brand and reputation.
Ahead of the 2022 event in Qatar, which took place in November and December for the first time due to the Middle Eastern country’s climate, there were reports of alleged human rights abuses of migrant workers working on the stadium’s construction. Qatar has also raised eyebrows with its ban on alcohol consumption and its stance on LGBTQ+ issues.
Shortly before the start of the first game, a shooting occurred in Auckland, New Zealand, near the hotel where some teams are staying, which left two people dead. New Zealand authorities have assured the public that it was a lone actor and there are no other threats. This is not the only problem facing the event.
Before the start of the tournament, Nilla Fischer, a former player for the Swedish women’s national team, released an autobiography in which she claimed that female players were asked to show their “doctor gene” before the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany following rumors of a man playing for the women’s team in Equatorial Guinea.
Fischer wrote that FIFA “didn’t do these things to make sense to anyone” but “a more appropriate kind of ‘testing’ would be sensible.”
She said, at the time, none of the players on the team were protesting because they were afraid they would lose the opportunity to play in the World Cup.
In addition, videos of players from the Spanish national team have recently surfaced, showing them replicating the haka dance. The IS so It is a Maori dance deeply connected to New Zealand culture performed in sport, war, celebration and to honor guests.
The players on the Spanish team who imitated the haka were considered disrespectful to New Zealand and its culture. The Spanish team has since apologized.
This is a historic Women’s World Cup in that it will be the first to be held by two confederations: New Zealand and Australia.