England played Germany in the 2022 Women’s Finals on Sunday, making history in two ways. First off, England has never won the UEFA Women’s EURO Tournament. As the hosts, their win against the eight-time champions was exciting for the team and especially for their fans. Perhaps this is why the match made history in a second way — attendance. The Women’s EUROs Final, played at Wembley Stadium, was attended by 87,192 spectators. The tournament as a whole was attended by over half a million people.
The previous record for attendance of a Women’s Euro match was 43,301 spectators, set back in 2013 at the finals. In the opening match of this year’s euros, 68,871 fans attended the England-Austria match, as recorded by the UEFA.
The match was extremely close, having to go into extra due to a 1-1 tie. England’s first goal came from #20 Ella Toone as she was able to run onto a pass from #4 Kiera Walsh behind Germany’s defenders and chip the ball into the top left corner. Germany then countered in the 79th minute, with a beautiful one touch finish from Germany’s #20, Lina Magull off of a pass from #18 Tabea Wassmuth.
With the match tied 1-1, the teams headed into overtime. England scored their match-winning goal in the 110th minute. It came off of a corner from forward Lauren Hemp (#11). It was volleyed towards the net, then rebounded with a touch into the net by #18 Chloe Kelly.
This match made history not just for the Lionesses, but for women’s soccer. And, honestly, for women’s sports in general. Women’s sports are under attended from the high school level to the pros. This new attendance record makes a statement. When considered alongside the win the USWNT got regarding equal pay, it seems as if the tide might slowly be turning for women’s sports. Hopefully going forward, this trend continues, and people begin to pay attention to the phenomenal female athletes playing in so many different leagues and sports.