I know… There’s still some time until November, but… THIS COULD BE HISTORIC! HISTORIC!
England Women have already sold out Wembley for the first time for their friendly against Germany on 9th November. The predicted attendance could easily smash the 45,619 record for an England Women home fixture, set at the last meeting with Germany at Wembley in 2014. Anyway, the crowd in the 90,000-capacity stadium should also top the 80,203 who watched the USA’s defeat of Japan at Wembley in the final of the 2012 Olympics. This would clearly become a women’s record game in England.
After such great reception and enthusiasm for the match, Sue Campbell, the Football Association’s director of women’s football, said: “This is a magnificent show of support for the squad and staff after a tremendous year of progress for the England team. What will make it even more special is to see everyone who has bought a ticket turn up on the day to help smash the all-time record on English soil.
My message to them is to come and be a part of history.”
Undoubtedly, this would be a great repercussion for women’s football in Englan, and worldwide, and could be a bigger “boom” on women’s game growth in the future, as it seems more people are getting much interest since the previous Women’s World Cup at France.
With England’s record for a game outside Wembley broken by 29,238 fans watching their 2-1 defeat against Brazil at Middlesbrough’s Riverside Stadium, interest in the Lionesses seems to have risen after they reached the World Cup semi-finals. That “interest” could be seen as “mirrored” in Women’s domestic football competitions, with more than 100,000 people attending the opening three rounds of the Women’s Super League, topping the approximately 92,000 who attended across all 110 games last season.
The record 31,213′ crowd for Manchester City v Manchester United at the Etihad Stadium, the 24,790′ at the London Stadium and the 24,564′ at Stamford Bridge make up the bulk of that figure, but games played in clubs’ more traditional homes are also seeing an increase in attendance.
As Manchester United manager, Casey Stoney said for The Guardian: “It just shows you where the game is going. If you put it on at the right time, in the right stadiums, and you market it well enough, it will sell.”
Will it be true that women’s football is actually growing? Or is it just an illusion, and still a big way ahead of them? Only time will tell.