An 8-Year-Old Girl’s Soccer Team Got Banned From A Tournament Because Organizers Thought She Was A Boy

Associate Editor
06.07.17 4 Comments

This is one of the more maddening and completely inexplicable stories you’ll read. Meet Mili Hernandez, an 8-year-old girl from Nebraska who plays soccer for an U-11 squad. The team, Omaha Azzuri Cachorros, was supposed to participate in a tournament over the weekend, but they were unable to because they were disqualified.

The reason? The folks who organized the tournament thought Hernandez was a boy playing for a girl’s team. Despite the fact that her parents had her insurance card which proved that she is a girl, the organizers were unswayed, largely because Gerardo Hernandez said the organizers “didn’t even want to take” the card. Mili’s brother, Cruz, said “They didn’t want to listen. They said the president made his decision and there wasn’t any changing that.”

Gerardo said his daughter was “in shock” and “crying” due to the incident, while Mili told a local television station “Just because I look like a boy doesn’t mean I am a boy. They don’t have a reason to kick the whole club out.”

If there is a silver lining to this story, it’s that former U.S. women’s soccer stars Mia Hamm and Abby Wambach reached out to Hernandez with messages of encouragement.

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