Top 10 of the great pioneers of sport

Bernard Lacombe, former president of OL, advised women to take care of their pots rather than football, we’re going to shut the door on him in this top.

I’m not going to teach you, sport in general, but especially football is an eminently male environment. Although high-level women’s sport has largely developed with great recognized athletes (Marie-Jo Perrec, Laure Manaudou, the Williams sisters, etc.), in sports professions (leaders, coaches, journalists, referees) women are still very little represented.

Whether leaders, coaches or athletes, let’s take a look at some women who have marked the history of football, but also of other sports, by being pioneers in their field.

1. Corinne Deacon (first French coach of a pro men’s football team – L2)

By coaching the Clermont team for three consecutive seasons, Corinne Deacon becomes the first woman to coach a men’s football team over the long term in Europe.

On August 30, 2017, she was appointed coach of the French women’s football team.

In short, it’s a very good career for the former ASJ Soyaux footballer who managed to win (and unfortunately it’s one of the only ones) in prestigious men’s football.

2. Marianne Mako, first sports journalist

Like many, Marianne Mako began her career by writing freelances for various media, before finally managing to land a job at TF1 on the famous program Téléfoot.

It becomes in 1987 the first woman to participate in a football program in the French television (and really, is not nothing). Marianne Mako opened the door to many other women who will specialize in sports journalism and especially football.

3. Hélène Schrub, general manager of FC Metz.

After studying in Paris and Limoge, Helene did a first internship in the communication department of FC Metz, after starting a career in another sector, she was quickly called back by the president of the Metz club.

Slowly she climbed the ladder to finally arrive club president a few years later. She is the only woman to hold this position in Ligue 1. In February 2021, she is on the Christmas list Graët, as a candidate to succeed himself as president (e) of the French Football Federation!

Started from the bottom now we here.

4. Stephanie Frappart professional referee refereeing games male

The French Stéphanie Frappart becomes the first woman to referee a qualifying match for a men’s World Cup (2018). She was the first woman to referee a Champions League match in 2019 (Juventus vs Dynamo Kiev). She had also refereed the UEFA Super Cup in Istanbul, still the same year.

Professional referees are developing more and more, but rarely at such a high level in men’s competitions. Stéphanie Frappart therefore marks great progress by imposing herself by her qualities as referees in competitions as prestigious as the Champions League or the World Cup.

5. Ada Hegerberg, first winner of the Golden Ball

In 2018, the Norwegian and OL striker was the first woman in the history of the Ballon d’Or ceremony to be rewarded. She had that season scored 15 goals in the Champions League with OL (a competition she had already won 3 times with this club).

She will pave the way for other footballers: Megan Rapinoe who wins the next edition and Alexia Putellas who wins the 2021 edition.

6. Surya Bonaly, first high-level black skater

9 times French champion, 5 times European champion, 3 times world vice-champion, Surya Bonaly is the first black skater to reach such a high level in figure skating.

Unfortunately she will suffer from her under-representation in this sport and will never manage to be crowned during a world championship, in favor of skaters who fit more “into the codes” expected by the jury (a story told in the documentary Blacks of France).

One of these figures, named after her the Bonaly, was banned: it was a backflip with a landing on one skate. Since 1976 saltos were prohibited because they forced skaters to land on both skates, which is outside the rules. Bonaly knew this rule well but she decided to try the jump, because the rules did not prohibit it, since no one had ever done it. This audacity will earn her a severe penalty and she will finish in tenth place in the standings, even though she is the only skater, man and woman combined, to have achieved such a feat.

Bonaly will have marked her sport by her audacity and her determination, driven by the motivation to overcome the discriminations they could experience against her competitors.

Top 10 of the great pioneers of sport
Photo credits (CC BY-SA 3.0): No machine-readable author provided. Uwe Langer assumed (based on copyright claims).

7. Maria Teresa de Filippis, F1’s first female driver

The Italian Maria Teresa de Filippis said it well: “Women are capable of doing everything that men do! and at age 31 in 1958 she was the first woman to drive in the F1 World Championship, and one of the few still to this day.

If the Italian, denounced the many sexist remarks that they could suffer, it is not for that that she decided to stop running. After losing two of his driver friends in F1 accidents, de Filippis decided to end his career.

The Italian died in 2016, still encouraging women in the sport to win and try out the Formula 1 Grand Prix.

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8. Megan Rapinoe, refusing several times to sing the anthem of his country

The American player is a star in her country, and above all a great figure in women’s football, especially for her political commitment. In 2016, Megan Rapinoe decided to no longer sing the American anthem in support of football player Colin Kaepernick to protest against police violence against the African-American community.

In 2019 during the World Cup, she also refuses to sing the American anthem to protest against Trump’s policy, which she considers to be excluding minorities. Once the American women are crowned, she refuses to go to the White House, explaining to Trump: “I think I would say that your message excludes people. You exclude me. You exclude people who look like me. “.

Megan Rapinoe marks her time but also women’s football internationally with her talent, but also her commitments. In 2019, she will also be the second footballer in history to receive a golden ball.

9. Marie-José Perrec, the greatest French athlete of all time

Marie-José Perrec will have marked French sport with her talent. She is to date the most brilliant French athlete by her record.

Men and women alike, she is the first athlete to win two consecutive titles in the 400m at two Olympic Games. Marie-José Perrec is recognized as one of the best athletes of all time, and makes French athletics shine internationally.

10. Kathrine Switzer is the first woman to run the Boston Marathon.

American Kathrine Switzer is the first woman to run the Boston Marathon with a bib. In 1967, five years before women were allowed to participate, she registered for the event under her journalist pseudonym “KV Switzer”, so as not to show that she was a woman. During the race, one of the organizers will try to prevent him from finishing the marathon by grabbing him violently and saying to him “Get out of my race! ” (nice).

She finally finish the marathon and upset minds (because people do not think that a woman was able to run a marathon) and 5 years later the event is also open to women.

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