A lot of people seem to ask if women’s world cup is as popular as men’s world cup.
Well, it’s an interesting question.
Because in recent years we have seen a meteoric rise in the women’s game.
From selling out stadiums.
To more people talking about it than ever before.
This has translated to the current Women’s World Cup 2023.
With the tournament gaining much recognition and support.
Its success is due to the improving talent of the women’s teams, showing off their abilities on the biggest stage.
However, the question remains.
Of the two world cups which is more popular? Or are they on the same level?
In this post, we will take a deep delve into this.
Table of Contents
Background information on Women’s World Cup and Men’s World Cup
The Women’s World Cup and Men’s World Cup are two esteemed international soccer tournaments.
For any footballer, male or female.
The goal is ultimately to represent your country.
Now while both competitions exist.
It is the former that has seen a boost in attention and viewership recently.
When you compare it to previous editions.
Whereas the Men’s World Cup has been more popular since its origination.
But its not exactly fair to compare the two exactly.
As this one has a much longer history that dates back to 1930.
More media attention.
Larger prize money.
But the Women’s World Cup is slowly moving into the frame, having a larger voice.
With it gradually earning more recognition and fame over the years.
For me the 2019 Womens World Cup.
Which was the one before the current one in Australia/News Zealand.
Was the first world cup I tuned into for Women.
Of which I thoroughly enjoyed it, and was a great spectatcle.
It broke records with an estimated billion viewers watching across platforms.
Which I am sure the organisers of this event, will only hope for similar results this time round in 2023.
Comparison of viewership and popularity between Women’s World Cup and Men’s World Cup
To compare the Womens and Men’s world cup we should pay attention to the key metrics that can show us the success of each.
Here is a table that I have put together that highlights both competitions:
|Women’s World Cup
|Men’s World Cup
|Viewership (in millions)
|Number of participating teams
|Average ticket price (in USD)
|Prize money (in USD)
|Adidas, Coca-Cola, Visa
|Nike, Adidas, Coca-Cola, Visa
Has you can see the Mens World Cup does out do the Womens World Cup in certain areas.
To start with the viewership, which is great for both.
Is just over 3x for men.
This is also the case for the average ticket price too.
Which is much higher for men.
Something I experienced myself when in Qatar 2022.
Forking out close to $200 for a Category 1 ticket for most games.
To big stat however from that table is the prize money, which is 100x less for women.
While the popularity is certainly growing in the Women’s game.
With the amount of money in the Men’s game.
This has been reflected in the prize money.
The final two consist of teams taking part and the sponsors.
Which are very similar for both tournaments.
But what is important to reinforce especially with those first few key metrics.
Is that the Womens World Cup is still fairly new.
Only founding in 1991.
Meaning the mens game has had a 60+ year head start.
So has the game grows for women.
Those metrics will all do so too.
Statistics on TV viewership and attendance
As you saw above no matter what World Cup your watching.
You can be sure that the womens and mens world cup will bring in millions of watchers.
Consiting of those watching behind a TV.
And those at the game.
Let’s take a closer look at the data for the recent World Cups:
|TV Viewership (in millions)
|Women’s World Cup (2019)
|Men’s World Cup (2018)
The figures show that the Men’s World Cup has a lot more TV viewers – a whopping 3.57 billion, compared to the Women’s World Cup’s 1.12 billion.
This 3x pattern continues as you look at stadium attendance.
With the men having that amount more then the amount that attended games in France 2019.
But what you will have to find with each of those stats.
Is that they higher than the previous tournaments for both women and men?
Which shows you the tremendous growth of each tournament.
Media coverage and public interest
Something I have seen in the UK.
Is that the media coverage and public interest of each tournament is contrasting.
Walking around in public, before the Mens world cup, you will hear many people talking about it.
In fact it would be hard for anyone to not know that its on.
Even if you do not like football.
However when it comes to Womens World Cup.
Despite the biggest efforts to the media to get attention to this tournament.
You find that much less people are talking about it.
Which in one way, might have something to do with the viewers.
Look at the data in the table:
|Women’s World Cup
|Men’s World Cup
|Average TV Ratings
|Social Media Buzz
Both are seemingly getting good coverage.
However has you can see.
There is still a gap between each one.
Saying that though, the Womens World Cup is still growing.
Its just not there just yet.
Social media has helped too.
With people surging to the various platforms to talk about the womens game.
However even in my experience from using Twitter during both tournaments.
Of which I would put in key players names in to the platform.
To see what people are saying about them.
I wouldn’t see as much buzz for some of the best womens players.
In comparison to the equivalents in the mens game.
But one thing is for sure is that this will improve.
Especially with companies making more of an effect to do the following:
- Promotion: Use diverse marketing channels to spread the word about women’s tournaments, so more people watch.
- Broadcasting Rights: Get more networks to show the matches, so they are available in more places.
- Influencers: Work with powerful people in sports and entertainment, to increase reach and make women’s football look even better.
- Investment: Put money into training facilities, stadiums and other infrastructure, to show how important women’s football is and get media attention.
Just like tournaments such as Wimbledon in Tennis.
It is possible for there to be a time, where the stats become and interest becomes more equal.
Factors influencing the popularity gap
Now from those factors, lets have a look into some of these a little closer, that explain the difference in popularity:
Amount of Media Coverage
Here in the UK and likely everywhere else in the world.
The games are very easy to access.
Which is great as this encourages more people to watch games.
With BBC and ITV showcasing every game of the Womens and Mens World Cup live.
It makes it very easy for anyone to switch on there TV and watch a game.
But beyond that, what I have seen grow is the effort that has gone into broadcasting.
From the teams and the experts that they have on to unravel a team’s tactics pre and post-match.
Is better than before.
This has a result and over time too, will lead to higher levels of fan interest.
That could one-day rival the Men’s World Cup.
In the world of business its pretty simple in the sense.
That the more views something gets.
The more money there is to be made.
Its because of this that the prize money is so high for mens and not so high for womens yet.
Because the viewers aren’t there.
However, has the Females game becomes more popular and sees more eyes.
We will see more financial backing put into the game by sponsors making the Women’s World Cup more popular.
If it was the womens football that was the first on the scene.
We may be looking at a different picture.
However the history of football for both genders plays a big role in how it is now.
With the mens game founding years ago.
This meant it became established.
With so many people naturally associating soccer with men playing.
However this is of course changing.
Especially if you just look at the past few decades.
But its important to remember this when acknoledging the overall perception and subsequent popularity of the Women’s World Cup.
Social and Cultural Factors
Another big factor is the the popularity gap.
With stereotypes associated with genders.
This has hindered the impact of womens sports.
Just a quick look even nowadays shows some people don’t respect womens football.
Even in 2023.
So its overcoming these cultural biases and fostering an inclusive environment.
Is what is going to narrow that gap between both women and men.
Progress made in bridging the popularity gap
The progress that has been made over the past few world cups has been considerable.
When it comes to closing that gap.
Womens football years ago was just a shadow of what it is today.
So when you bare that in mind, it fills you with optimism for the future of both,
Here are the notable advancements in this regard:
|The Women’s World Cup has witnessed a significant rise in viewership, with audiences tuning in from around the globe.
|The tournament has attracted major corporate sponsorships, ensuring financial support and exposure for the event and its participants.
|Media coverage of the Women’s World Cup has expanded extensively, with dedicated broadcasts, analysis, and highlights reaching a broader audience.
|Equal prize money
|Efforts have been made to bridge the prize money gap, with the FIFA Women’s World Cup now granting equal rewards to the champions.
|Growing fan base
|The Women’s World Cup has been able to cultivate a passionate and dedicated fan base, reflecting the increased interest and engagement with the tournament.
Selling out stadiums.
Bigger brand deals by some of the world’s biggest brands.
Of all strides in the right direction and show that the Women’s World Cup has so much potential.
Conclusion: Is the Women’s World Cup as popular as the Men’s World Cup? Evaluating the current state and future prospects
In conclusion the Mens World Cup is more popular then the Women’s World Cup.
Mainly for the reasons that I stated in this post.
From more money, eyes, and years in the game.
Over the Women’s World Cup.
However, while it still lags behind its male counterpart.
Its surge in popularity, especially over the last few years.
Shows a promising future is in store.
Viewership and attendance for the tournament have increased significantly in recent years
Signifying a growing global support for women’s football.
Also, media coverage of the matches has upped to, with them prioritised on TV.
More than ever before.
This also allows fans to engage with the tournament on various platforms.
Moreover, sponsors and governing bodies have been investing more in women’s football.
This financial aid has enabled better infrastructure, training facilities, and development of the sport at both amateur and professional levels.
Frequently Asked Questions
FAQ: Is the Women’s World Cup as popular as the Men’s World Cup?
Answer: While the popularity of the Women’s World Cup has been increasing in recent years, it is not at the same level as the Men’s World Cup.
FAQ: Why is the Men’s World Cup more popular than the Women’s World Cup?
Answer: The Men’s World Cup has a longer history, more established teams, and higher levels of investment and promotion compared to the Women’s World Cup.
FAQ: Are there any differences in the quality of play between the Men’s and Women’s World Cups?
Answer: While the skill level and competitiveness of women’s football have significantly improved, there are still differences in terms of physicality and pace compared to the men’s game.
FAQ: Have there been any efforts to promote and grow the Women’s World Cup?
Answer: Yes, there have been extensive efforts by FIFA and other organizations to promote and grow the Women’s World Cup, including increased prize money, media coverage, and grassroots development programs.
FAQ: Is there an equal level of global attention and media coverage for both World Cups?
Answer: The Men’s World Cup generally receives greater global attention and media coverage compared to the Women’s World Cup, but the coverage and interest in women’s football have been steadily growing in recent years.
FAQ: Are there any plans to bridge the popularity gap between the Men’s and Women’s World Cups?
Answer: There are ongoing efforts to bridge the gap, such as increased investment, promotion, and the implementation of strategies to enhance the visibility and popularity of women’s football globally.