“There has never been a better time to invest in the women’s game – this is the golden moment right now,” Sara Booth, FIFA’s Head of Women’s Football Competitions told delegates in her keynote speech at the 25th Sports Assembly, taking place at EBU HQ in Geneva.
Opening a dedicated session: Focus on Women’s Sport, Sara addressed sport representatives from over 30 EBU Members:
“Women’s football is thriving and there are so many unique stories to tell and captivating moments on and off the field of play waiting to be discovered. But we need your help to tell these stories and to create a cultural shift where women’s football consistently takes centre stage and where young boys and girls throughout Europe can see female role models on their TV screens.”
“We now have a unique window of opportunity following the unprecedented success of the Women’s World Cup and it is important that we collectively harness and sustain the momentum created this summer to ensure continued visibility of women’s football (and women’s sport in general) throughout Europe and the rest of the world.”
“France 2019 will be remembered as a watershed moment. The difference this time - TV, and not just any TV, but free to air TV. With over one billion viewers worldwide, France has catapulted the FIFA Women’s World Cup to a whole new level. All of a sudden, these incredible athletes were centre stage and readily available for young and old, male and female across the world to see. This was an awakening.”
“We want to thank EBU Members for the tremendous role you played in achieving this. Regardless of whether you had a participating team or not you still embraced the competition and gave unprecedented access on your platforms.”
“The collective strength of the EBU is that you have the power to affect change and to ensure unparalleled exposure of women’s football within your territories. There is a massive opportunity to harness the appetite that clearly exists within women’s football right now and to use the platform provided by our beautiful game to shape the discourse around gender equality not just in sport but in wider society. Together we have the power to make a difference in football and in society and I would urge you to do what you can to make a difference in your countries.”
The Focus on Women’s Sport session also featured an insightful panel debate, with a variety of perspectives on gender-equality in sport. On the panel were Asa Edlund Jonsson, Head of Sport at SVT, Marie Binet, Account and Innovation Director at Publicis Media, Stanislas Frossard, Executive Secretary of the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Sport of the Council of Europe with BBc journalist Helen Brown as moderator.