Germany Hopes Record Viewing Figures for Women’s Soccer World Cup Will Boost 2018 Winter Olympic Bid

June 28, 2011

A record television audience for women’s soccer was set on Sunday during the opening game of the FIFA Women’s World Cup on Sunday. The tournament, hosted by Germany, will see all 32 matches broadcast live on German television, and 14.1 million people watched Germany’s opening 2-1 win against Canada, played in front of a sell-out crowd of 74,000 in Berlin’s Olympiastadion.


The record viewing and attendance figures boost Munich’s hopes of hosting the 2018 Winter Olympics and Paralympics games.


Katarina Witt, the chair of the Munich 2018 Bid Committee, said: “Women’s football has a strong base here in Germany, so the organisers can guarantee passionate crowds, an incredible TV spectacle and, fingers crossed, a great performance from the home team – just what athletes, fans and sponsors want.


“And because we have that strong base, the FIFA Women’s World Cup in Germany will be an excellent platform for raising the profile of women’s football all over the world and inspiring a generation of young athletes to play and stay in sport.


“Munich 2018’s Festival of Friendship will have exactly the same energising effect on every sport on the Winter Games programme.


“An Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games in Germany would revitalise the worldwide winter sports movement, with an unforgettable sporting spectacle, unprecedented commercial revenues and greater global exposure than ever before.”


Germany is the current holder of the Women’s World Cup, and the country is a leading power in the sport, reflected by the fact that more than one million female players are registered with the German football league.


Steffi Jones, the President of the FIFA Women’s World Cup 2011 Organising Committee, added: “It would be great to have the Olympic and Paralympic Games back in Germany after such a long time.


“Knowing Germany’s passion for sports and its enthusiastic fans, one can imagine what a fantastic event Germany could offer to the athletes and the Olympic Movement.”


Bernhard Schwank, chief executive of Munich 2018, chose to emphasise Germany’s record hosting major international sporting events, most recently having also held the men’s World Cup in 2006, a tournament considered to be the most successful in history.


Schwank said: “The athlete has been at the heart of every single planning decision we have made.


“We’ve been able to put together a uniquely athlete-friendly concept because we have been in constant consultation with our 125 sports ambassadors, and because Germany has such enormous experience in hosting sports mega-events – we really know all the little things that make a big difference to an athlete’s experience.


“The FIFA Women’s World Cup is the latest in a long, illustrious list of international competitions in Germany, and we’ve worked hard to incorporate the lessons we’ve learned from every single one of them.”


The final decision on the host for 2018 will be made in Durban on July 6, with Munich up against competition from Annecy and Pyeongchang.