The soccer players are excited about the Queens | Sports

The second final four of the Kings League, held last Saturday at the Metropolitano, registered decreases in the audiences of its broadcast through Twitch and less public attendance at the stadium. The first time 92,522 people filled the Camp Nou. On this occasion, which also included the women’s version, the Queens League, 57,326 of the 70,000 seats at the Madrid venue were occupied for an almost eight-hour show that kept its dynamism with 7-a-side football matches, streamers and a good dose of chance with secret cards and a giant dice.

“Queens has awakened my inner child. I have taken it as a game brought to reality. It had been a while since I had such a good time”, said a few days before the final four Mari Paz Vilas, a professional player who has made a career for Levante Las Planas, FC Barcelona and Valencia, and now plays for Porcinas, the Ibai team plains For Alba Mellado, another history of women’s football, above all it has been a media boost: “I have been playing football since I was 17 years old, and more people have known me for playing in Queens than for doing it in Espanyol or Levante”, says the front of the XBuyer.

Sara Mérida, Porcinas player.
Sara Mérida, Porcinas player.Manuel Queimadelos (Manuel Queimadelos/Quality Sport Images/Queens League)

The project seeks that impact, as explained by Oriol Querol, CEO of the Kings and Queens League, and inventor of the format, with Gerard Piqué: “It was born from a reflection on traditional football and on those things that we believe are becoming outdated. There is a generation that is increasingly disconnected from traditional football because there are very long games without anything happening or ending in a draw”. In its format, two-half football matches of 20 minutes are played, in which elements that can alter the course of the game are introduced with cards: jokers with two minutes of a double goal, expulsion, penalties or even shootouts (penalties from the middle of the field). As Vilas says, football and this “are completely different worlds. Queens looks for the show, for people to have fun, and they get it. Meanwhile, the F League has the objective of taking women’s football to the maximum professionalization”.

Querol believes that they are close: “In Queens, the distance with respect to women’s professional soccer is shorter than the one that Kings has with men’s. There is a sufficient level to face many teams in the F League ”, he assures. The level surprised Rubén Casado, former Espanyol coach, although with certain reservations: “I have seen profiles that would have played with me in the First or Second Division. I think we will see a player who leaves Queens go to the F League. Of course, since it is a different format, what they do in Queens may not repeat it in 11″ football.

The performing hall of the Queens and Kings League.
The performing hall of the Queens and Kings League.

The Sevillian content creator Espe, president of Aniquiladoras, one of the clubs, believes that professional football could gain projection with some of Queens’ strategies: “Liga F should go one step further with influencers and promotion. Women’s football is interesting, there is a spectacular level and it is not given the same importance as men’s. We need to invest more in content for girls and make it more popular in the media”.

In just seven months, Queens accumulates 387,000 followers on Instagram, while the F League, the professional category, barely reaches 30,000. “They should take note of Queens’ ability to generate content and how it is able to approach different audiences,” Casado assumes. For the athletes, explains Mari Paz, the competition is not only fun, but it can become “a faster platform to boost to be visible in higher categories”.

The 1K players, Iker Casillas' club.
The 1K players, Iker Casillas’ club.Matthew Villalba (Matthew Villalba/Quality Sport Images)

In Queens, the best player from each club can earn a maximum of 15,000 euros per year, less than the minimum set by the collective agreement for professional women’s soccer, which only applies in the First Division, set at 16,000. The Queens minimum is 150 euros per game, for a competition of up to 15 games, that is, 2,250 euros per season, seven times less than in League F.

“There is a gap between the women’s First Division and the rest of the categories,” says Casado. “There are going to be players in Queens who are paid better than they are in their leagues.” He refers to the non-professional categories, for which Mari Paz sees that Queens is an advantage: “Salaries have risen tremendously. I don’t think the F league has to feel fear or danger. It is not a war against them. The other way around; they can learn and get positive how Queens has managed to pay these amounts in such a short time”. For Mellado, the increase in salaries in professional soccer “is something that should have happened a long time ago in the women’s league. You sacrifice everything. And in the end, it is very little rewarded, because when your career is over, there is no further.

From the F League they have not wanted to enter to assess these statements and prefer to distance themselves from Queens. They consider that the competition focuses on the show, while the F League works for the professionalization of women’s football. Teams and coaches of the first women’s division have not wanted to make any kind of statement either.

For the next edition of the Kings and Queens, which begins in September, everyone’s minimum wages will be doubled. In addition, they will add an exclusivity clause: they will not be able to combine Piqué’s league with another team in another competition, as had happened so far in some cases. Espe, the president of Aniquiladoras, believes that the measure will be positive: “If we want it to be a professional project, we must also demand the same as professional clubs,” she says.

On Saturday, in addition to the fans who attended the show at the Metropolitan, an average of 800,000 spectators followed him on streaming from home. Like Casado’s daughters: “For them and for many girls it is a way for women’s soccer to reach them, since the Queens communication channel is more direct, and they have access to it.” But even in this competition the gap with the men’s is still great. On Saturday, when the Kings final ended, many spectators left the stadium, without staying for the Queens final.

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