England-US women’s game at Wembley sells out in one day
LONDON (AP) — England’s women’s soccer team is continuing to generate unprecedented fan interest following its European Championship victory, with its planned game against the United States at Wembley Stadium in October selling out in less than a day.
The game pitting the European champion against the reigning world champion was announced on Tuesday by England’s Football Association and will be played Oct. 7, subject to England having secured World Cup qualification in September.
The Lionesses’ official Twitter account posted an update early Wednesday that read: “YOU GUYS ARE AMAZING. 65,000 tickets have already been sold for our October international against the United States!”
The team later said the game was sold out, but did not say how many tickets had been put up for general sale.
The ticketing website briefly crashed on Tuesday amid the huge demand.
It comes after a crowd of 87,192 — the biggest-ever attendance for a European Championship match, men’s or women’s — saw the Lionesses beat Germany 2-1 after extra time at Wembley on Sunday as England’s women’s team secured its first major trophy.
Sarina Wiegman’s team will play World Cup qualifiers against Austria away on Sept. 3 and then Luxembourg at Stoke’s stadium three days later. Ticket sales for the latter fixture had reached 20,000 by midday on Tuesday.
England currently tops its World Cup qualifying group with a maximum 24 points from eight matches and would seal qualification for next year’s tournament in Australia and New Zealand with a draw against second-place Austria or a win against Luxembourg.
If England has to play in the World Cup playoffs in October, anyone with a ticket for the U.S. game would be entitled to a refund, the FA said.
The team is also using its Euros success to urge politicians to do more to promote the women’s game.
The Lionesses wrote an open letter Wednesday to the two candidates in the running to be Britain’s next Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak and Liz Truss, calling on them to prioritize funding for girls’ soccer in schools.
“We have made incredible strides in the women’s game, but this generation of school girls deserve more,” the letter said. “This is an opportunity to make a huge difference. A change that will impact millions of young girls’ lives.”
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