Two weeks after the most thrilling FIFA Women’s World Cup in football history, we now take a look at the aftermath of the French Coupe du Monde: from an incredible sponsorship deal to breaking historical records, here are the 7 most compelling takeaways from the tournament.
Hyundai Motor Co. was one of the main sponsors of the 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup in France, a sponsorship that truly got behind the women’s game with a range of different activities that underlined the automaker’s support for female athletes and development. The theme of Hyundai’s World Cup campaign was “True Passion” which referred to female athletes’ inner strength for overcoming discrimination, social challenges, and prejudices.
The sponsorship deal included digital content, a supply of 96 Hyundai vehicles, and marketing programs such as “Match Predictor presented by Hyundai” and “Hyundai Goal of the Tournament” which strived to bring fans on FIFA’s official website and digital app. They also introduced FIFA Fan Experience zones outside the stadiums where fans could play football, take photos and experience displayed vehicles up close.
This year’s tournament achieved record levels of coverage as TV viewing figures showed a changing attitude toward women’s football and the World Cup. In fact, England vs USA – which aired on BBC One in the UK – became the most watched show so far this year on British television with 11.7 million viewers. France’s quarter-final match against USA hit 10.7 million viewers, making it this year’s most watched French TV programme, too.
If we take a look at the 2015 World Cup, around 750 million people tuned in to watch the tournament on television; this year’s viewership across all platforms reached around 1 billion.
Incredible numbers for women’s football.
According to FIFA executives, this year’s tournament featured the largest prize money pool ever for a women’s World Cup: $30 million was the total prize money awarded to the participating countries at the World Cup and $4 million the prize money awarded to the USWNT – twice as much as what they earned for winning the World Cup in 2015. However, to put things into perspective with their male counterparts, the French National Team who won the World Cup in 2018 received $38 million in prize money for bringing the tournament home.
One of the most remarkable moments of the World Cup group stages was without a doubt the game between Italy and Brazil, two top nations who battled on the field and won off it. In fact, the game aired on one of Italy’s main TV broadcasters, Rai Uno, and hit 6.5 million viewership’s with a share of 29.3%. An incredible figure that surpassed Italy’s Under-21 game of 5.6 million views and Roberto Mancini’s Euro 2020 qualifying match against Greece which reached 5.3 million views.
A significant data which demonstrates the growth and impact the women’s World Cup has had on fans, along with the rising interest of many around the country that tuned in to watch the Azzurre.
An incredible run for the USWNT who managed to retain back-to-back World Cup titles by beating the Netherlands 2-0 in Lyon. However, let’s take a closer look at some of the (many) records the team broke during this year’s competition in France:
According to Nike’s CEO, the U.S. women’s team jerseys topped the men’s team sales: “the USA Women’s Home jersey is now the #1 soccer jersey, men’s or women’s, ever sold on Nike.com in one season”. This significant number highlights how women football players (and athletes) are also able to attract interest from brands and generate revenue for companies. In fact, the rapid jersey sales combined to the high ratings (more than 600.000 Canadians watched the semi-final games), have ultimately bolstered further requests for equal pay in football.
Let’s start with the runners-up: an incredible achievement for the Netherlands who made history in only their second women’s World Cup appearance ever. Sweden claimed a top-three finish for the fourth time in their history and nations like South Africa, Chile, Scotland and Jamaica all participated in their first World Cup ever.
According to FIFA, Italian striker Cristiana Girelli was included as one of the main ‘Individual Performers’ of the tournament, along with Sam Kerr, Ellen White, Julie Ertz, Vivianne Miedema and more.
The tournament showcased class and talent but might also see some of its best players hang up their boots ahead of the 2023 World Cup: for Brazil’s Marta and Cristiane, along with Canada’s goalscoring legend Christine Sinclair and USA idols Carli Lloyd and Megan Rapinoe, this might have truly been their last tournament on the big stage.
If so, congratulations to all on an incredible International career!