FIFA are probably the worst governing body in all of sports. We all knew that before and it's nothing new. What is new, however, is stars from other sports calling them out on how awful they actually.
That's exactly what Kobe Bryant did today. The Los Angeles Lakers star is easily one of the biggest names in basketball and has come out in defense of female soccer players who have essentially been made test rats by FIFA.
Today Kobe tweeted out a picture of United States women's national team player Sidney Leroux's legs covered in burns from playing on artificial surfaces. "This is @DrinkBODYARMOR athlete @sydneyleroux after playing on turf! #ProtectTheAthlete #USWNT" Bryant tweeted out along with the picture.
And Kobe isn't the only NBA star lending their voice to the fight against FIFA. 2014 NBA Most Valuable Player is backing up Leroux and the rest of women's football on his facebook account.
In his Facebook post, KD said, "C'mon now FIFA u can't have our women playing on turf. @sydneyleroux I got ya back."
So what is everyone up in arms about?
Well, FIFA plan on playing every single one of the 2015 Women's World Cup on artificial turf as "a test."
As you can well imagine, the players themselves are not happy about this at all and could even threaten legal action against Sepp Blatter and company if the plan is not reversed to allow them to play on grass like most other professional football matches are.
Why not Men?
Last year, stars of the women's game signed a petition urging FIFA and Canada’s soccer association to use grass fields at the tournament. Nearly 4,000 people added their support by signing, too, including more than 50 national-team players from 12 countries.
The petition did nothing. Now, with the tournament less than a year away, the players say they are willing to take their fight to court if they must. Late last month, their lawyers sent letters to FIFA and the Cup’s Canadian organizers saying they would go to court if necessary if those entities refused to change the fields to grass.
“Singling out this women’s tournament for substandard treatment is a mistake that can and must be corrected,” the letter said.
The cause now has big name backers and a greater audience in the general public so we'll just have to wait to see if anything is done. Playing a whole tournament on turf is ridiculous. Burns like the one Leroux suffered are all too common on the surface and you can bet the matches will be of a lesser standard because of it.