International vs. Club Soccer?
Reason #1, the highest levels of the top clubs have hoards of cash to buy the best players from around the world and are essentially forming something of an international all-star team. The national teams can only draw upon, obviously, only those who are passport holders of that nation so the talent base is simply not as big.
Reason #2, the clubs play a long schedule and get good at playing together while national teams train in fits and starts so they never get totally used to each other.
This item over at ESPNFC by Michael Cox gives those reasons and more.
I wonder if that is true for the women's game?
I suspect not.
1) The international competitions probably hold higher prestige value than club level achievements at this time.
2) I am guessing that club level women's soccer just doesn't have enough cash in it to have the same international all-star team effect as in the men's game.
From what I gather, the UK women's national team has gained a lot of public affection because of how well they are doing and the level of passion of their play. Meanwhile, the UK men's national teams are known for early flame outs and fans saying they play with no passion because they are saving their energy for where they get their paychecks - the clubs they play for.
The US Women as a group and as individuals have been rock stars because of their success, interesting personal stories and admittedly a very well oiled PR machine.
In the US Men just a few individuals have been breaking through to become the "face of the team" but nowhere near the US Women. Also, I think the USMNT has gained a following more as a collective group due to national pride reasons rather than great successes and compelling individual stories. I'm sure US Soccer would like to see the USMNT get farther in the World Cup and find some marketable "faces of the team" to further its popularity.