There’s a saying in sports that the name on the front of your jersey is what matters most. But the Swedish women’s soccer team is making the case that the words on the back are important, too.
The Swedish team, which finished second at the 2016 Olympics after upsetting the Americans, has dropped player names from the back of its shirts in favor of inspiring feminist messages. Each player selected a favorite quote from a prominent Swedish woman to appear on her jersey.
The team partnered with Adidas to launch the unconventional initiative after the country’s men’s team garnered much of the accolades and media attention at the Rio Olympics despite the women’s historic win. The limited edition jerseys go on sale on March 8, International Women’s Day. That same day, the Swedes will compete in the championship match of the Algarve Cup in Portugal. Swedish organizations that support young female athletes will receive 10% of the shirts’ proceeds.
Team captain Lotta Schelin said the team jersey is a national symbol and that the phrases are a good reminder to win no matter the circumstances. “There is always a need to show young women that it is possible to succeed and that no one should feel limited in what they can achieve and particularly not because of their sex,” she said.
Here are some of the phrases players chose:
“Never look down on someone unless it is to help her up”—Swedish politician Gudrun Schyman
“To try is to be successful. The result is secondary as long as you dare”—journalist Frida Soderlund
“Believe in your damn self”—artist Zara Larsson
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