sports

England Exults After Women’s Euros Soccer Win

LONDON — For over 50 years, English soccer followers have hoped, prayed and sung {that a} main trophy would “come house.” Now it lastly has. And they will hardly comprise themselves.

Thousands of supporters screamed and chanted on Sunday at Trafalgar Square in central London and at different viewing events across the nation, the place the ultimate of the ladies’s European Championship was proven on massive screens.

On Monday, footage of the Lionesses, because the group is understood, dominated the entrance pages of British newspapers after their 2-1 win over Germany at Wembley Stadium in London, the headlines praising them as “recreation changers” or “historical past makers” and declaring “No extra years of harm.”

Politicians and royals despatched messages and congratulations to the group on its victory — a dramatic conclusion with parallels to England’s final main championship, in 1966, when the nation hosted the boys’s World Cup and its group defeated Germany within the last.

But the success held the potential to transcend nationwide delight and euphoria, with girls’s soccer occupying the general public consciousness in Britain like by no means earlier than.

“I feel we actually made a change,” mentioned the group’s Dutch coach, Sarina Wiegman, at a information convention after the match. The group had executed loads for the game however for the position of girls in society, too, she added, a sentiment that was echoed by others.

“It’s been a tremendous month and a tremendous day yesterday,” mentioned Mark Bullingham, the chief govt of the Football Association, England’s governing physique for soccer.

“I feel it is going to actually turbocharge every little thing we’ve been doing within the girls’s recreation,” he mentioned in an interview on “BBC Breakfast” on Monday, including that the group had invested closely in girls’s soccer over the previous few years.

“There is not any motive we should not have the identical variety of ladies enjoying as boys and we predict it is going to create an entire new technology of heroes who ladies aspire to be like,” he mentioned.

There’s actually room for enchancment. A report printed in March by “Fair Game,” a collective of 34 English soccer golf equipment, discovered {that a} gaping gender divide in soccer golf equipment all through England and Wales saved the game “residing within the Dark Ages.”

Only 11.1 p.c of board members at Premier League golf equipment are girls, and two-thirds of the league’s groups have all-male boards, the report mentioned. Significantly fewer girls had been attending video games in England in contrast with different international locations.

“This is at a time when public attitudes in direction of sexism and misogyny are altering, and soccer wants to vary too,” mentioned Stacey Pope, an writer of the report.

That change felt potential because the Lionesses emerged victorious on Sunday from a match that was attended by a report variety of followers — the gang of greater than 87,000 was the most important for any European Championship last, males or girls.

Queen Elizabeth despatched a message of congratulations to the group, writing that whereas the athletes’ performances deserved reward, “your success goes far past the trophy you could have so deservedly earned.”

“You have all set an instance that will probably be an inspiration for women and girls at this time, and for future generations,” she wrote.

Kevin Windsor, a graphic designer in London, watched the match along with his 3-year-old daughter, who was carrying a princess robe. “My daughter does not need to have an curiosity in soccer. She simply has to know that it is an possibility,” he wrote on Twitter. “That she will be able to change into something she units her little coronary heart on. From a princess to a lioness. And every little thing in between.”

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