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A women’s professional football match was canceled due to a music festival; Red Stars looking for a place to play it

ANNE M. PETERSON, Associated Press

4 minutes ago

FILE - Chicago Red Stars midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo, right, lunges for the ball against North Carolina Courage midfielder Havana Solaun during the second half of an NWSL soccer game on June 5, 2021, in Bridgeview, Illinois.  The Red Stars are looking for an alternate venue for their Sept. 21 home game against the San Diego Wave due to a just-announced music festival at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview.  (AP Photo/Shafkat Anowar, file)

FILE – Chicago Red Stars midfielder Vanessa DiBernardo, right, lunges for the ball against North Carolina Courage midfielder Havana Solaun during the second half of an NWSL soccer game on June 5, 2021, in Bridgeview, Illinois. The Red Stars are looking for an alternate venue for their Sept. 21 home game against the San Diego Wave due to a just-announced music festival at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview. (AP Photo/Shafkat Anowar, file)

The Chicago Red Stars are looking for an alternate venue for their September 21 home game against the San Diego Wave due to a just-announced music festival at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview, Illinois.

Riot Fest organizers announced Wednesday that the festival would move from its old Douglass Park location in Chicago to SeatGeek Stadium — conflicting with the previously scheduled National Women’s Soccer League match.

Red Stars president Karen Leetzow denounced the decision on social media on Wednesday.

“It is unfair and unfortunate that our club finds itself in this situation, which shines a light on the stark disparities in the treatment of professional women’s sports versus professional men’s sports,” Leetzow said in the statement. “We are committed to ensuring our players and fans have a first-class experience both on and off the pitch, and we are working hard to find a solution that ensures our September 21 match is a success. ”

The Red Stars drew an NWSL record 35,038 fans to their most recent match, a special match Saturday against Bay FC at Wrigley Field in Chicago. The average attendance for Red Stars home games on SeatGeek this season was 8,317.

The team has been playing at SeatGeek since 2016 and their contract with the stadium expires after next year. The stadium has been criticized for its distance from downtown Chicago and lack of public transportation.

Riot Fest organizers did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment. Beck, Fall Out Boy, Sublime and St. Vincent are among the artists scheduled to perform at the event.

Ray Hanania, a spokesman for Bridgeview, said the village is working with the team on a resolution. He said the stadium is part of a larger fairgrounds, allowing both events to coexist.

“It is clear that the Red Stars are very important to us and always have been, and we want to do everything we can to ensure that they are happy,” he said.

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More AP soccer: https://apnews.com/hub/soccer

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