Nadine Kessler, UEFA’s head of women’s football

Nadine Kessler, head of UEFA women’s football, has rejected claims that the European Football Governing Body lacked ambition in selecting a venue for Euro 2022, breaking attendance records for the tournament in England.

The opening game between England and Austria at Old Trafford and the final at Wembley will see a record crowd for the twice-broken match at the Women’s European Championships.

However, between those two landmark events on July 6 and 31, the other 29 games will be played in many smaller stadiums.

The choice of Manchester City’s 4,400-capacity academy stadium for the three group matches was described as “shameful” and “disrespectful” by Iceland midfielder Sara Bajork Gunnarssdotir.

The 7,800-capacity Leigh Sports The village will host four matches, including the quarterfinals.

Ticket sales collectively are growing to half a million, more than double the total attendance for the last women’s euro in the Netherlands five years ago.

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But there are still more than 200,000 tickets for sale and Kessler acknowledged that the choice of venue should be based on “reality” to create the best possible atmosphere inside the stadium.

“We think it’s still the right decision,” Kessler told AFP.

“I always say that we can’t lose reality when we try to have the greatest ambition, and I’m referring to the past. We had an average of 5,000 spectators in our last women’s Euro, if we don’t count the matches in the Netherlands.

“If you increase the capacity of the tournament from 430,000 to 720,000, I don’t think you can say that the organizers of the tournament don’t have enough ambition.”

– ‘Visible Difference’ for 2017 –

The tournament was scheduled for 2021, but was delayed by 12 months due to its impact. Corona virus Epidemic on the football calendar.

The Covid-19 stopped some pace of the women’s game after a record-breaking 2019 The world Cups in terms of looking at statistics.

But the last five years since the last euro have still been transformative for the women’s sport.

Kessler was behind the big change when the group stage was introduced for the first time last season in the Women’s Champions League.

Money has flowed in from new sponsors, television rights deals and clubs that are now willing to spend big to improve the standards of their women’s teams.

“My expectations are really high, I expect a visible difference in 2017,” Kessler added about what to expect on the pitch.

“Even when I watch some domestic football, I already felt this throughout the whole season of the Champions League.

“Both have shown that in many countries there has been a great improvement in what has happened with the overall professionalism and the rise of standards around teams.

“It’s just logical that you can see results even on the pitch.”

Kessler was part of the German team that won the Euro in 2013 – one of 12 times Die Nationlef won the tournament 8 times.

However, it is the hosts England and Spain who are the favorites before the tournament as they want to win the women’s major tournament for the first time.

France, Holder Netherlands and Olympic silver medalist Sweden are the real contenders, while Norway’s Ada Hagerberg and Denmark’s captain Pernil Harder will also equip their nations with two of the world’s top strikers.

“It’s good that so many contenders, so many teams, have publicly declared their ambition that they all want to go for it,” Kessler said.

“The top of the pyramid got a little wider. We also need this to generate more interest. “

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