The U. S. Postal Service issued a stamp last week commemorating Women’s Soccer at Exploria Stadium, a location for the SheBelieves Cup and home to the Orlando Pride of the National Women’s Soccer League.
“This stamp honors more than a sport; it honors the women whose leadership continues to inspire the generations behind them,” said Amber McReynolds, a member of the U.S. Postal Service Board of Governors. “Whether it’s on the pitch or at the podium, American female soccer players have been fighting for more than wins. They have been fighting for fairness and equality. And in the process, they have helped women everywhere move the ball down the field on a host of issues.”
“The Women’s Soccer stamp will bring more attention to our sport,” said Morgan Wright, player for Orlando City Youth Soccer Club. “It is my hope that this stamp will inspire more young women to play this beautiful game.”
This new Forever stamp celebrates women’s soccer in the United States. From youth leagues to the elite U.S. National Team, millions of girls and women throughout the country participate in this fast-paced, competitive sport.
Soccer, also known as football internationally, is the most popular sport in the world, played by hundreds of millions of people in almost every country. In the United States, women’s soccer has gained a firm foothold in sports and popular culture.
For decades, women’s athletic programs were all but invisible on U.S. college and university campuses, receiving very little of the funding and none of the recognition of their male counterparts. In 1972, Congress amended federal education law by adding Title IX, prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sex from any educational program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.
By 1985, female soccer players were finally able to compete on an international level. That year the U.S. women’s National Team played its first official matches in Italy. In 1991, the team competed in the first official FIFA Women’s World Cup, held in China – – and won the championship.
Despite international competition, women’s soccer remained relatively unknown. It didn’t truly gain a following until the 1996 Summer Olympics, when women’s soccer was included as a sport for the first time. The U.S. won the gold medal, beating China in an internationally broadcasted game.
Since then, dozens of elite female athletes have donned the U.S. women’s national soccer team jersey and dominated in matches around the world. In 2019, the United States made history as the only team to win four FIFA Women’s World Cup titles.
Youth soccer has seen a large uptick in girls’ participation over the years. The U.S. Youth Soccer Association had about 100,000 players registered in 1974, only a fraction of whom were girls. Today, that number is in the millions, due in no small part to the tremendous success of professional players and greater access to competitive play.
The stamp artwork depicts a female soccer player in action, striking a ball with a side volley. Conjuring the aesthetic of mid-century print design, illustrator Noah MacMillan (1988–2022) used simplified shapes and bold colors to convey the high energy and fast motion of the sport. The somewhat grainy rendering lends a timeless quality to the design, evoking not just a single all-star athlete or era but the entire legacy of women’s soccer.
Art director Antonio Alcalá designed the stamp.
The Women’s Soccer stamp is being issued as a Forever stamp in panes of 20. Forever stamps are always equal to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce price. News of the Women’s Soccer stamp is being shared with the hashtag #WomensSoccerStamp.