Tuesday 16 July 2019

Net gains: rise in viewers tuning in for the Women's World Cup


Some 121,000 viewers watched the Sweden v Canada match. Picture: Reuters
Some 121,000 viewers watched the Sweden v Canada match. Picture: Reuters
Melanie Finn

Melanie Finn

RTÉ says the appetite for the Fifa Women's World Cup is growing steadily as the event reaches its closing stages.

This year saw the broadcaster and TG4 showing all 52 games in the tournament for the first time in a bid to show their support for women in sport.

And despite Ireland not qualifying for the competition, Irish viewers have been getting behind the tournament which is being hosted by France, as evidenced by the slowly rising audience figures.

Last week's match between England and Japan averaged about 92,100 viewers, but the number tuning in had increased by the time Monday's game took place, in which Sweden beat Canada 1-0.

That averaged 121,000 people, which made up an 11pc share of the available audience.

Meanwhile, Tuesday night saw the figure climb to 130,000, which again represented an 11pc share.

TV bosses will be hopeful of bettering that for tomorrow's clash between France and the US, while England are set to face Norway tonight.

"Our audiences have been growing steadily," said an RTÉ spokesperson.

"We're very happy and hoping to continue seeing more growth."

RTÉ's extensive coverage is part of the station's commitment to the 20x20 initiative, which is backed by the Federation of Irish Sport.

Aimed at creating a cultural shift in the perception of women and young girls in sport, the campaign hopes to see 20pc more media coverage of female-led sporting events, with 20pc more attendance at women's games.

The World Cup final is scheduled to take place in Lyon on July 7.

Irish Independent

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