The Lionesses have put a smile on the face of a divided nation

Editorial: The Lionesses’ triumph will be long-lasting and permanent

<p>Hopefully, England’s triumph will win over doubters who grumble that the women’s game is inferior to the men’s</p>

Hopefully, England’s triumph will win over doubters who grumble that the women’s game is inferior to the men’s

England’s remarkable victory in the final of the Women’s Euro 2022 competition has achieved even more than the performance by England’s men in their Euro finals a year ago. Both teams excited and united the country and now the women have managed to go one crucial step further than the men by claiming the trophy.

Gareth Southgate’s team doubtless encouraged more boys to kick a ball in the park or school playground or join a local football club. Yet Sarina Wiegman’s Lionesses have performed an even more important service for the nation: making a powerful statement that football is unmistakably not “just for the boys”. The Lionesses’ triumph will be long-lasting and, hopefully, permanent – it certainly means much more than the wonderful celebration of victory in one match, with a series of superb performances and also putting a smile on the face of a country facing an economic crisis.

Women’s football has grown quickly in the UK in recent years – it was only four years ago that the Women’s Super League became fully professional – but the past four weeks will surely provide rocket boosters, with a record 87,000 attendance for a women’s European final at Wembley, and by reaching new audiences as TV viewing figures for the tournament were broken.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in