Nike’s sponsorship of the U.S. womens soccer (football) team at the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2007 in China is celebrated in this print and outdoor advertising campaign using the tagline, “The Greatest Team You’ve Never Heard Of”. The greatest team you’ve never heard of has together missed out on 13 proms, 74 birthdays, 21 Thanksgivings, and 989 boyfriends. And they don’t regret it. They know why they give up these things. They know that game-changing slide tackles and goals and championships and having a second family and doing it all for each other are the rewards. They know to put team above all else. They are the Greatest Team You’ve Never Heard Of.
The Greatest Team You’ve Never Heard Of includes a tattooed surfer, a college football fanatic, a humanitarian and a trucker-hat-wearing scuba diver. The scholar gets the humanitarian to run more sprints in practice. The scuba diver gets the football fanatic to relax. The surfer teaches the scholar how to, well, surf. The team’s differences don’t trigger yelling or backstabbing or ball hogging or losses. The team’s differences make the Greates Team You’ve Never Heard Of stronger.
The greatest team you’ve never heard of played 22 games last year and did not lose once. This team put 57 shots into opponents’ nets and pulled only 10 balls out of its own. This team sent 29 different players on to the field but never revolved around one. And yet this team is a team you know nothing about.
This team does not know what practice means. When this team faces itself in a practice game, shin guards crack and noses bleed. Their opponents triple team Abby. They throw everything but the kitchen sink at her. But she’d rather face three of them than one of a Cat. Because Cat knows Abby like the back of her hand. And when Boxxy sends Tarp flying off a hard tackle, Tarp’s happy to return the favor. (No love lost, actually more love gained). Watching, you’d think it was the finals in China. For the Greatest Team You’ve Never Heard Of, everything is.
The Nike Womens World Cup campaign was developed at Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, by executive creative directors Steve Luker, Jelly Helm, creative directors Alberto Ponte and Jeff Williams, copywriters Dylan Lee and Nathan Goldberg, art directors Miriam Kaddoura and Shannon McGlothin, art buyers Mia Lischer and Krystle Mortimore, photographers Klaus Thymann and Gary Land.