UEFA Women’s Euro 2022 gets an official fantasy football match
- Fantasy Women’s Euro 2022 is now live ahead of the tournament
- Starling Bank is the National Banking Partner of UEFA Women’s Euro 2022
Starling Bank, national partner of UEFA Women’s Euro 2022, has launched the first-ever official fantasy game in the tournament’s history, hoping to boost fan engagement and ensure more equal representation with football male.
Starling says he was inspired to create the official Women’s Euro 2022 game to ensure women’s football gets the same treatment as its male counterpart.
Research commissioned by the company has suggested that 63% of people in the UK believe women’s football should have the same visibility as men’s football and that one in five people would play the women’s fantasy if it were available.
“We built Starling Bank to give people the bank we thought they deserved. Now here we are again launching another industry first, this time for women’s football,” said Helen Bierton, director of banking at Starling Bank: “I hope this inspires people to talk about the brilliance of female footballers even more – as well as improving people’s budgeting skills.”
“I’m so excited to build my fantastic first team which includes the Lionesses of England,” added Rachel Yankey, former England women’s international and current Starling Bank Ambassador. “When I was growing up, there was nothing like it. I hope fans young and old will really enjoy building their teams and seeing how women’s football has come to where it is. is today.
“As a youngster, I shaved my hair and pretended to be a boy just to fit in. Nowadays, the final of this tournament has already sold out Wembley Stadium before a ball even was kicked in. However, the playing field is not yet level – every move towards equality makes a big difference.
The game works like most other fantasy football games, giving users a hypothetical budget of £84m to build a squad of real players from all 16 official teams.
Points are awarded based on performance, and users compete in leaderboards against friends and the wider community. On top of that, one randomly selected player will also win an eight-seater box at Wembley Stadium for the 2023 Women’s FA Cup Final.
Starling Bank has also commissioned women’s football publication Girls on the Ball to create regular match analysis to further drive engagement and help fantasy managers devise a winning strategy.
“It’s time we had a fantastic league for the UEFA Women’s Euro,” said Rachel O’Sullivan, co-founder of Girls on the Ball. “Fantasy football is about much more than creating a dream team and competing with your friends. It inspires people to invest in different players, watch matches more closely and celebrate players’ skills in football , regardless of national borders.
Many sports organizations recognize the value of fantasy games in attracting and holding the attention of fans during and between events, as well as their ability to encourage competition and conversations among fans.
But although most men’s football competitions have official fantasy matches, few focus on women’s competitions despite the growing popularity of UEFA and Fifa tournaments and the FA Women’s Super League (WSL) . There is no reason for this to be the case.
Official fantasy games for women’s football will help leagues and federations acquire data to better understand their fans and attract a wider and more engaged fanbase who will know more about the teams and players they are watching.