FA plans first Women’s Football Weekend after record WSL attendances

FA plans first Women’s Football Weekend after record WSL attendances
English soccer’s Football Association (FA) has announced the first ever Women’s Football Weekend on the back of the top-flight Women’s Super League’s (WSL) record-breaking return to action.

The event, taking place from 16th to 17th November during the men’s international break, will feature a North London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur at the latter’s new 62,000-seater stadium. The weekend will also see Liverpool face Merseyside rivals Everton and Chelsea play Manchester United.

The FA has called on soccer fans to take advantage of the gap in the men’s domestic calendar to attend a women’s match at any level in the pyramid.

The move comes after the WSL’s opening weekend of the 2019/20 season saw a record-breaking 62,921 fans attend the first round of six games, representing a 12-fold increase on the start of the previous campaign.

The figure was boosted by the fact that Manchester City and Chelsea played their opening home fixtures at the stadiums used by their men’s teams.

City’s Etihad Stadium brought in 31,213 fans for their 1-0 win over rivals United, while 24,564 supporters watched Chelsea win by the same scoreline against Spurs.

Kelly Simmons, the FA’s Director of the Women’s Professional Game, said: “We are excited to announce the first ever Women’s Football Weekend, for what is sure to be another great moment in a year that has seen huge momentum behind the growth in popularity of women’s football.

“There has never been a better time to visit your local team, and we encourage all supporters to get involved at all levels of the pyramid on 16th to 17th November.”

Women’s Football Weekend represents the FA’s latest attempt to improve the visibility of women’s soccer in England. The governing body has also launched the FA Player, a new over-the-top (OTT) streaming platform that provides free live coverage of every WSL fixture and one game each round from the second-tier Women’s Championship.

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