Development and Internationalization of Women’s Football

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Football is no longer just a man’s sport. Women have invaded the pitch and are kicking the ball with great success. Celebrate football – celebrate equality!

The number of women involved in football is growing rapidly. Women’s football is probably the most popular women’s team sport on the planet, but there is still work to be done in many areas so that the game can continue its exponential growth. “The word football doesn’t differentiate between male and female. Football is a game featuring 22 players and one ball, and it’s the same for both men and women,” said Albania national coach Altin Rrakli.

Let’s take a look at the rapid development of women’s football on the international scene.

1972

On the 17th of April France beat the Netherlands 4:0 in the first women game, recognized by FIFA. In the next 2 years Italy, Switzerland, Yugoslavia, Scotland, England and Republic of Ireland played international matches.

1974

Italian Serie A and French Division 1 for women were established. They are still considered among the most competitive leagues in Europe.

1980

18 national football federations attended the second UEFA conference on women’s football, where they proposed the establishment of a European competition for women.

1984

After a two year long qualifying cycle the first ever final in a national competition for women was played by Sweden and England. Sweden won on penalties, after both home games were won 1:0 by the hosts.

1991

The first European Championship for women, hosted by Denmark was won by Germany. China hosted the first ever FIFA World Championship for women.

1993

Norway beats Italy in the finals of the European Championship. It is the last Championship not won by Germany for the next 20 years.

1996

Germany beats Sweden in Kaiserslautern thus winning the European title again, but loses against Norway in the finals of the World Championship.

1997

100 years after the first Olympic Games were held in Athens women’s football tournament is added to the list of Olympic sports

2000

In Sweden and Norway the first European final tournament is held with 8 participating teams and is won by Germany.  The first Under 18 UEFA European Championship for women is organized. Norway is the winner of Olympic Games tournament in Sydney.

2002

In the first official final of the European women club competition, in front of 12.000 fans, a German team 1.FFC Frankfurt beat the Swedish team Ulmea IK 2:0.

2003

Germany beats Sweden with the golden goal from Nia Kunzer. Birgit Prinz wins the first ever FIFA Women’s World Player of the Year. She won it three times in a row.

2004

Umea is the first team that repeats winning the UEFA Women’s Cup with the 8:0 win over Frankfurt. Brazilian Marta scores 3 goals.

2005

A record number of fans, 29.092, gather on the final game of the European Championship in Manchester between England and France. England won.

2006

German dominance continues with the all German finals in UEFA Women’s Cup and the final victory of Frankfurt against 1. FFC Turbine Potsdam. The first and only final played by teams from the same country. By also winning the Under 19 championship Germany held all UEFA women’s titles.

2007

Germany won the World Championship and the first ever women’s Under 17 European Championship. With Arsenal winning the UEFA Women’s Cup, the trophy for the first time doesn’t go to Germany or Sweden.

2008

Frankfurt is the first team that wins the UEFA Women’s Cup three times.

2009

Germany wins its fifth consecutive European title with the 6:2 victory over England. UEFA Champions League for women is established with 53 teams participating. The title goes to Potsdam winning on penalties over Olympique Lyonnais.

2010

Birgit Prinz becomes first European winning 20 trophies with the 3:0 victory over North Korea.

2011

A record number of fans, 73.680, gather on the opening game of the World Championship in Berlin.

2012

Olympique Lyonnais repeats the victory in the UEFA Champions League by winning the finals in Munich in front 50.212 fans. 80.203 fans watched the Olympic Games final match between USA and Japan.

2013

Germany wins its 6th consecutive European Championship.

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