When men return home from sporting competitions, they’re lauded as heroes, plain and simple. But a tweet from England’s Football Association sums up exactly how female athletes are treated differently.
The tweet, since deleted, came after the England team returned home after placing in third at the Women’s World Cup, noting, “Our #Lionesses go back to being mothers, partners and daughters today, but they have taken on another title — heroes.”
While the FA maintained that it was a well-meaning message and part of a larger story on the team’s homecoming, fans pointed out that the men’s team would not be described as “fathers, partners and sons” in the wake of a third place victory, but simply as athletes.
With or without the sexist tweets, the women of Team England have plenty to celebrate: as at least one person tweeted, they progressed farther in the competition than their nation’s mens team has since 1966.
- Volodymyr Zelensky and the Spirit of Ukraine: TIME's 2022 Person of the Year
- Mickey Guyton Is TIME's 2022 Breakthrough Artist of the Year
- The 10 Best Nonfiction Books of 2022
- Column: What Elon Musk Gets Wrong About Free Speech
- The Forgotten Story of One of the First U.S. Soldiers Killed Overseas After Pearl Harbor
- Why You're More Likely to Get Sick in the Winter, According to New Research
- Column: What the Protests Tell Us About China's Future
- 18 Last-Minute Gifts for Everyone on Your List