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Ticket demand forces Women’s WC opener to be moved to Stadium Australia

FIFA has announced that the opening day match of the World Cup in Australia/New Zealand will be held at Sydney’s Stadium Australia.

Australia Stadium in Sydney.

The 2023 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand appears set to go down in the history of women’s football due to the surge of demand for tickets. Such is the interest in for Australia’s opening day game of the tournament FIFA has decided to change the venue for the 20 July opener to a bigger stadium.

Co-hosts Australia will now play their game against the Republic of Ireland at Stadium Australia in Sydney with the ground having a capacity for 80,000 spectators, but expandable to 100,000.

The teams sing the national anthem during the 2023 Sydney Sevens
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The teams sing the national anthem during the 2023 Sydney SevensMark MetcalfeGetty

WC23 looking to break Camp Nou record

The Camp Nou holds the record for attendance at a women’s football match after last year 91,553 spectators witnessed the contest between Barcelona and Wolfsburg in the Women’s Champions League. The Catalan ground surpassed the previous record of 90,195 spectators who packed into the Rose Bowl in Pasadena (California) for the 1999 World Cup final between the United States and China. As things stand, the World Cup opener in Sydney is on track to eclipse previous records.

“FIFA’s mission is to organize the best Women’s World Cup in history this year. And the fans, who bring color, passion and atmosphere to the stadiums are a fundamental factor in the success of the tournament,” said FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura, adding: “For this reason, we have made a decision that will allow more than 100,000 fans to attend the opening day, which will provide more opportunities for the fans to connect with the Women’s World Cup and with the start of a month of football that we will never forget”.

Fatma Samoura
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There will be no modification to the date or time of the game. The Stadium Australia was originally scheduled to host knockout games along with the final on 20 August. The opening ceremony will continue to be at Eden Park in Auckland before the contest between New Zealand and Norway.