dismissals, wages, visibility, infrastructure… where is women’s football in France?

France face Germany in the semi-finals of Euro 2022 this Wednesday: excellent news for French women’s football, which nonetheless suffers from an extended lag to males’s football, but additionally to its European neighbours.

Just earlier than Women’s World Cup 2019, organized in France, Noël Le Graët hoped to capitalize on the passion to see the variety of licensees bounce to 300,000 (179,000 in 2019). But the FFF president was shortly disenchanted, as in June 2022 there have been 209,692 licensees (out of a complete of two.1 million), together with 168,789 gamers.

Ambitions in the variety of licensees

First defeat for “NLG”, adopted by one other coincidence, with the emergence of Covid-19, interrupted by two shortened seasons for the newbie championships. But nonetheless, FFF sees the glass as half full. The federation studies a development of “16% in comparison with final season”. “FFF has by no means registered so many licensees,” she claimed, highlighting “the feminization plan launched in 2012 by President Noël Le Graet” which “made it doable to double the variety of curtailed ladies or girls (lower than 90,000 in 2010-2011).”

>>> the stay textual content of the semi-final of Euro Germany-France

In the columns of Western Francethe president of the FFF just lately talked about a brand new goal, wanting to succeed in the symbolic bar of 250,000 licensees in 2024. Compared to “rivals”, France is behind Germany (210,000 licensees in 2021) however forward of England (121,000 in 2019) or the Netherlands (162,000 in 2019).

A imaginative and prescient of issues that won’t essentially attraction to everybody. A couple of weeks in the past, when the FFF introduced that it was making use of to host Euro 2025, Ada Hegerberg stepped as much as the plate: “The group of worldwide competitions is good. Investing in our championship is higher,” the Fenottes participant dropped in a message written on Twitter. We are renewing and CDM 2019 had no influence.”

Major infrastructure delay

In France, the 12 D1 Arkema coaching programs don’t profit from the identical working situations. The groups to the skilled golf equipment depend on higher situations than the 100% feminine sections, whereas two newbie golf equipment (Issy and Fleury) full the image of the non-professional championship.

A distinction that extends to the decrease stage, as evidenced by the Yzeure crew earlier than the French Cup last in opposition to PSG. “We have mediocre situations for coaching. We would not have the means to have an expert construction to facilitate restoration. We solely have three gamers with a federal contract,” Opheli Mailerou defined to RMC Sport.

An announcement shared by Sonia Bompastor, the coach of OL, in entrance of the microphone of RMC Sport. “We must get up to start with on the stage of the federation. I used to be on the recreation between Barcelona and Atlético and there is an actual cultural distinction. We nonetheless have quite a lot of work to do on this. We want to enhance the infrastructure, the stadiums, the situations for broadcasting on tv, factors out the one who has already gained the Women’s Champions League twice as a participant. The federation must advance on many matters: coaching in golf equipment, youth championships, in order that they will play in championships , which permit them to harden on the highest stage. There are a number of such factors that we have to work on shortly as a result of in any other case we are going to shortly be overwhelmed and it might be a disgrace for French women’s football. There’s an emergency, I’m sounding the alarm.”

FFF has elevated support and is betting on promising poles

For his half, Noël Le Graët recalled {that a} “high-level women’s fee” had been created “to optimize the competitiveness of golf equipment”. “Numerous sources go into structuring and coaching. Even if the FFF is not supposed to subsidize 100% of the women’s sections of golf equipment, it has considerably elevated its help. We have granted extra support this season of €50,000 to D1 Arkema membership. New funding is underway alongside the identical traces. We have additionally elevated funds for the Women’s Cup.”

When it involves preparation, the French Federation has dedicated 100% to feminine hopefuls, as is the case with the boys. On the opposite hand, there is no coaching heart acknowledged by the state. Across the 4 corners of France, eight buildings have sprung up (in comparison with 16 for boys) in Blagnac, Clairfontein, Lieven, Lyon, Merinac, Rennes, Strasbourg and Tours. From subsequent season, these facilities will enter a brand new dimension as they are going to be out there for younger ladies U15 (underneath 15). Until now, solely gamers between the ages of 16 and 18 had entry to it.

The challenge of tv rights

Another robust query: that of tv rights. Holder of the rights to D1 Arkema from 2018-2019, the Canal+ group signed a long-term five-year contract for a complete sum of €6 million (€1.2 million per season). It broadcasts all matches on its channels (two matches on Canal+ Sport and 4 on Foot+). “PSG-OL in prime time they appeal to a median of 500,000 viewers. A traditional day, with out a poster, on D1 Arkema brings collectively between 50,000 and 100,000 cumulative viewers in 2019,” confirmed Thierry Chelleman, sports activities director of the Canal + group. However, TV rights are nonetheless comparatively modest in France, which places a pressure on the funding capability membership potential.

This is not the case in England, as Sky Sports and the BBC signed a deal in 2021 guaranteeing the published of 66 English league video games per season for a document payment of round £7 million (round €8.1 million) per 12 months. Added to this is a sponsorship deal (signed in 2019 by Barclays financial institution with the Women’s Super League for a sum of over €11.5m over the following three seasons) which provides English women’s football a very good monetary floor higher than this of the French counterpart. D1 can’t depend on the title Arkema to save lots of the coffers, because the sponsor weighs 1.2 million euros per season.

In the stands, success is additionally felt slowly. If PSG broke Champions League information for a French crew (43,254 folks at Parc des Princes in opposition to OL in the semi-finals and 27,000 in opposition to Bayern in the earlier spherical), the determine is a good distance from absolutely the document crushed by Barca girls, which drew 91,648 followers to Camp Nou for the match in opposition to Wolfsburg. In the league, the document is nonetheless held by OL, nonetheless in opposition to PSG in November 2019 with 30,661 spectators on the Groupama Stadium. Aside from the status posters in opposition to the 2 D1 leaders, it is exhausting to get folks in the bays.

Pay disparity

Differences are additionally seen in the extent of wages, where OL and PSG face the remainder of the world. final march The crew estimated the common gross month-to-month wage per participant at €12,000 at OL and €9,000 at PSG, however at €2,000 or much less for a member of seven of the 12 elite groups. It is essential to notice that some gamers have an enhanced federal contract (there is no skilled contract in women’s football, ed.), whereas others would not have an employment contract and produce other aspect actions to fulfill their wants.

In an try to right such discrepancies, the final meeting of the FFF authorised the brand new pyramid of nationwide championships for girls. Forget the ten-club championship speculation, which did not sit properly with many. If no change is deliberate for D1, which stays at 12 golf equipment (with two collection), D2 will see a giant change, not least. If the second tier till now has two teams of 12 groups, there will likely be a single group after two years to create D3 with two teams of 12 groups.

Therefore, the following season guarantees to be very troublesome in D2, because the six lowest ranked groups in each teams (ie twelve formations) will likely be transferred to this future D3 on the finish of the 2022-2023 monetary 12 months. The tightening of D2 continues after the championship was decreased to 2 teams in 2016. In reverse: twelve golf equipment from Regional 1 will likely be promoted to D3 for the 2023-2024 season. The new third division will due to this fact include 24 groups divided into two teams of twelve. A format that takes the present one in D2. This third division will likely be notably accessible to D1 golf equipment’ reserve groups and “has an authorised coaching centre”.

Once the transition season is over, there will likely be two promotions and relegations from D1 to D2 and from D2 to D3. Regional 1 groups trying to attain the third tier might want to undergo a two-round becoming a member of part to find out the six groups that will likely be promoted to D3, like what is presently organized to maneuver from R1 to D2. A semi-final for Les Bleues is probably not sufficient to spark a significant increase. The title, however, may be…

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