The Sisterhood

The 99ers and the Rise of U.S. Women's Soccer

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Pub Date 01 Nov 2021 | Archive Date 01 Nov 2021

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Description

For legions of soccer fans, the players on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team are the game’s standard-bearers. Together their accomplishments include four World Cup titles and four Olympic gold medals. Within five years of their inaugural match in 1985, the team was the best women’s soccer team on the planet. But its rise was neither easy nor harmonious. The national team came onto the scene when team sports for women were in their infancy. The players were paid little and played to sparse crowds on marginal pitches and carried their own equipment and luggage. They faced discrimination and unequal treatment, most notably from their governing bodies, FIFA and U.S. Soccer.

The Sisterhood is the story of the first and second generations of national team players, known as the 99ers, who were the driving force behind the rise of U.S. women’s soccer and who built the foundation for the team’s enduring success. Rob Goldman takes the reader onto the pitch and into the minds of the players and coaches for the team’s greatest victories and most heartbreaking defeats. Among those featured are players Michelle Akers, Julie Foudy, Mia Hamm, and Brandi Chastain, as well as coaches Anson Dorrance and Tony DiCicco.

When the team won the ’99 World Cup in front of more than ninety thousand fans at the Rose Bowl, it was the largest crowd to ever attend a women’s sporting event. After Brandi Chastain’s winning penalty kick beat China, everything changed. These women’s soccer players were no longer outcasts; they were hard-nosed players and leaders who not only transformed women’s sports but led a cultural revolution. They were trailblazers, role models, and selfless best friends. Their story, told here largely in the voices of the players and coaches who were there, is epic and inspiring.

For legions of soccer fans, the players on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team are the game’s standard-bearers. Together their accomplishments include four World Cup titles and four Olympic gold...


Advance Praise

The Sisterhood includes some of my favorite stories from the badass women whose DNA and gritty mentality are the inspiration and legacy of today’s world-dominating U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team.”—Michelle Akers, National Soccer Hall of Fame member, Olympic and World Cup champion, and FIFA Female Player of the Century

“In The Sisterhood, Rob Goldman vividly captures the 99ers’ personalities, mentality, and our love for the game and for each other. I lived this story and became a better player and person because of these women. The Sisterhood shows you why.”—Kristine Lilly, National Soccer Hall of Fame member, Olympic gold medalist, and 1991 and 1999 World Cup winner

“A phenomenal story of how an extraordinary group of women built the foundation for one of the most dominant teams in sports history. A fantastic read that takes you along on the journey with players who formed more than a team. They formed a sisterhood.”—Kevin Baxter, Pulitzer Prize–winning sportswriter for the Los Angeles Times

The Sisterhood includes some of my favorite stories from the badass women whose DNA and gritty mentality are the inspiration and legacy of today’s world-dominating U.S. Women’s National Soccer...


Available Editions

ISBN 9781496228833
PRICE $32.95 (USD)

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Featured Reviews

This book is a treat for any sports fan, but especially those young girls that have been encouraged by the strength and commitment of these tremendous athletes to make things better for the next generation. The interviews show a side to the story that not many are truly aware of. It is an honest look inside the growth and development of the game of women's soccer, including both the good and the bad sides of the times.

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Such a detailed and interesting look into the development of Women's Soccer. The fight the 99ers had for their sport and to have a supportive national team and league is in equal parts amazing and frustrating to read about. Amazing for how hard these women worked and frustrating because their followers on the national team are still having to fight for equal pay. An excellent look into the sport and these important women.

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Soccer fans rejoice! The Sisterhood provides an incredible look into the development of U.S. women's soccer. I enjoyed the insider perspective of the coaches and players, their struggles and triumphs as U.S. women's soccer rose to dominance on the world stage. I would recommend this books to sports fans, feminists, and anyone interested in stories of grit and determination.

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This book dives into the Women's National Soccer Team and explores their founding days all the way up until the retirement of several veteran members. As a U.S Women's Soccer fan, I was very excited to read this book and it didn't disappoint. Goldman does a great job of moving the narrative forward in a compelling way, while also going deep into many individual players and their thoughts, hopes, and motivations. I discovered a newfound respect for these soccer pioneers, reading about the various ways they were forced to fight for their team and discovering how they persevered through difficult battles in their personal lives as well. I was also dismayed to learn that the women's team was trying to fight for equal pay all the way back in the 90's, and that particular issue is still prevalent for the women's team to this day. As for the writing, there were quite a few spelling and grammar errors in the copy of the book I read, but they didn't damper my enjoyment of the book itself. The book was also structured well, with a comprehensive epilogue that I very much enjoyed reading after getting so invested in these women and their lives.

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As a lifelong women’s soccer fan, I really loved reading this. I grew up as women’s soccer was really becoming a thing in the US and remember watching the 99ers and how much of an impact it had on me. The author provides some amazing insight into specific players and off the field encounters while also walking you through game play of some of the biggest moments in USWNT history. I really loved some of the soccer history I hadn’t heard before, especially surrounding rules and equipment. And the personal touch of having stories about individual players and team connections on and off the field was something I hadn’t seen in a book like this before. Would highly recommend to any fan of US Women’s Soccer!

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I received this novel as an advanced reader copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This book goes into great detail about the women who played soccer in the 1990s, shaping the game for generations to come.

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