Germany, Netherlands and Belgium in joint bid for 2027 Women's World Cup
Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium have today revealed plans for a joint bid to host soccer's 2027 Fifa Women’s World Cup.
The national soccer associations of the three countries (DFB, KNVB and RBFA) said that they have informed Fifa of their intention to bid, and that a formal agreement, and more documentation, will be in place by the end of 2020.
Negotiations with the respective governments and proposed host cities will then be carried out.
Fifa has not yet set deadlines or dates for the bidding process.
The Netherlands hosted the most recent Uefa European Women’s Championship in 2017, and Germany staged the Women's World Cup in 2011, but Belgium has never held a major women's tournament.
Germany has already been chosen as the host of the men's European Championships in 2024, while Amsterdam is one of the 12 host cities for Euro 2020, now postponed to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Netherlands had already announced its intention to bid for the 2027 Women's World Cup, back in 2018, with the plan receiving backing from the country's parliament.
In a joint statement, the governing bodies of Germany, the Netherlands and Belgium, said: "Women’s football in our countries is indeed in differing phases of development, but we share the aspiration to give the sport a boost nationally and globally by organising this World Cup.
“The fact that we are tackling this project together as three football competitors, and also good neighbours, ties in very well with this philosophy.”
Peter Bossaert, chief executive of the RBFA, added: “In recent years, with the European Championship in the Netherlands in 2017 and the World Cup in France in 2019, we have seen what such an event can bring - great matches, full stadiums, large numbers of TV viewers and visitors from all over the world.”
France hosted the last Women's World Cup, in the summer of 2019, and it was widely regarded as the most successful women's soccer event to date, attracting 1.2 million spectators from home and abroad.
Figures unveiled after the event also showed that 993.5 million people watched at least one minute of the coverage of France 2019 on linear television, an increase of 30 per cent on the 764 million for the previous World Cup in Canada in 2015.
The event also contributed €284 million ($318 million) to France’s GDP, resulting in a net capital gain of €108 million, according to a report commissioned by the French Football Federation and the local organising committee. The report found the average contribution to the French GDP per spectator was €142.
Last year, buoyed by the success of the 2019 Women's World Cup, Fifa pledged to double the $500 million it ploughed into women’s soccer between 2015 and 2018 for the present four-year cycle, and has insisted it remains committed to the investment despite the fallout from the pandemic.
In June this year, Australia and New Zealand were awarded hosting rights to the 2023 Women’s World Cup, after being chosen ahead of a rival bid from Colombia.
Brazil and Japan were the other candidates but withdrew before this week's voting, while South Africa, Argentina and South Korea declined to follow up initial interest with formal bids.
The 2023 Women's World Cup will be the first to feature 32 teams, up from 24 in 2019, when USA were crowned champions for a record fourth time.