Women’s football is becoming more and more popular and England’s home win at the 2022 Euros is only likely to see that growth increase on these shores. An increasing number of girls are playing football in England too and so the future for the Lionesses looks bright.
Helping to keep the ball rolling in terms of growing the game, the next women’s World Cup is just around the corner. If you are a long-term fan of the women’s game, you’ll no doubt have had the next global showpiece in your diary for some time. However, if, like so many, you have only just come to love football without the diving, play-acting, rolling on the floor or haranguing the refs, you probably aren’t quite fully up to speed. Fear not though, as we’ll bring you all the basics about the next tournament, including when and where the World Cup is taking place and who we fancy to win it.
When Is the Next Fifa Women’s World Cup?
We will start with the easy ones: the next World Cup takes place between 20th July 2023 and 20th August 2023. The first game will see New Zealand play Norway, which might just give you at least a shot at guessing where the tournament will be played.
Where Is the 2023 World Cup Taking Place?
Australia and New Zealand are co-hosting the women’s World Cup in 2023. NZ get the privilege of hosting the first game, whilst Australia will have the final. Sydney is the venue for the deciding game of the tournament and will also host one semi, with Auckland holding the other. The two teams unfortunate enough to be involved in the third place clash will at least get to travel to sunny Brisbane.
The full list of venues for the World Cup is:
- Sydney – Stadium Australia and the smaller Sydney Football Stadium will both be used
- Auckland – Eden Park
- Brisbane – Lang Park
- Wellington – Wellington Regional Stadium
- Melbourne – Melbourne Rectangular Stadium
- Perth – Perth Rectangular Stadium
- Dunedin – Forsyth Barr Stadium
- Hamilton – Waikato Stadium
- Adelaide – Hindmarsh Stadium
These stadia cover a nice range of capacities, with Stadium Australia set to host the biggest games and capable of housing well over 80,000 fans. Four other venues have capacities of 39,000 upwards, whilst some of the less popular fixtures can be played in Adelaide and Perth, which hold around 18,000 and 22,000 fans respectively.
Are Tickets Available?
Ticket sales have been very strong, with a recent report stating that more than 600,000 tickets had been sold. With around three months until the big kick-off, organisers are hoping that a record 1.5m fans will watch the 2023 extravaganza. So, whilst the event is proving very popular – Australia’s opening clash, also on the first day of the tournament, was moved to a larger venue – there are certainly still tickets available.
What Group Are England In?
The draw for the tournament was made on 22nd October 2022. Both the hosts, plus England, Germany, defending champions USA, Sweden, France and Spain were in Pot 1 as top seeds. The Lionesses were drawn in Group D, alongside Haiti, Denmark and China in the expanded 32-team World Cup.
The #FIFAWWC 2023 Groups are set! 🙌
Which one is the most exciting? 😁 #BeyondGreatness
— FIFA Women’s World Cup (@FIFAWWC) February 23, 2023
England’s fixtures are as follows:
- Haiti, 22nd July in Brisbane
- Denmark, 28th July in Sydney (Sydney Football Stadium)
- China, 1st August in Adelaide
Sarina Wiegman’s European champions are strongly expected to top the group and if they do they will face the runner-up from Group B. That could well be Canada, with Australia hopeful of topping that group ahead of the Canadians, the Republic of Ireland and Nigeria.
Who Are the Favourites for the Women’s World Cup in 2023?
Unsurprisingly the defending champions USA are the favourites ahead of the big kick-off. The US, who won the World Cup last time out in France, are seeking a hat-trick after also winning in Canada in 2015. With World Cup glory in 1999 and 2003 they are by far the most successful nation in the history of the tournament. In addition, they were runners-up in 2011 and, amazingly, have never finished worse than third in the eight World Cups to have been played.
Despite this historic dominance, England are not too far behind the States in terms of the betting. This is partly down to their win at the Euros, but also their recent victory over the South American champions Brazil in the Finalissima. Their incredible unbeaten run was ended by Australia, and they are likely to be without Beth Mead, but even so, they will have a real chance in Australia and New Zealand, where they will be well supported.
Other contenders include Spain, Germany, France and Sweden, whilst Australia could also be dark horses. The Aussies will have been given a tremendous boost by becoming the first team to beat England since April 2021. In addition, they are always strong in tournaments on home soil, no matter what the sport, whilst in Sam Kerr they have a genuinely world class forward.
FIFA Women’s World Cup 2023 Summary
If reading all of the above was too much, here are the key facts about the upcoming World Cup:
- Where? – Australia and New Zealand, with the former hosting the final and the latter the opening clash of the tournament.
- When? – NZ get things underway in Auckland when they play Norway on 20th July. The final is on 20th August.
- Defending Champions – USA have won the last two World Cups, four in total, are ranked number one by FIFA and are the favourites.
- Dark Horses – Australia could well delight their own fans by going all the way.
- Tickets? – selling well but still available at FIFA.